How many times have you said no today? I am usually around double digits before I have even finished reheating my second cup of the coffee in the microwave…..for the third time. The reasons I say no tend to vary. If I were to break it down, it would probably break out like this:
- 35% convenience
- 29% safety concerns
- 11% outlandish requests
- 10% time constraints
- 9% gravity
- 4% not old enough
- 2% illegal
After some evaluation of my reasons for saying no, I felt a little guilty about how often I turn down my kids requests out of convenience and felt I should make slightly more of an effort to entertain some of their ideas. That is how the YES day was born.
The rules are pretty simple. We must be safe. It can’t hurt someone physically or emotionally. It must be legal (you would be alarmed at how often my kids want me to run red lights or go to the bank and ask for all the money). The request needs to be inclusive of everyone who is with us. We cannot just go buy toys.
Then we head out on our day. I always make sure to clear my calendar ahead of time so I am not on a timetable. On days when that is not possible, I give a YES window instead of a whole day. I don’t give them any input, I just stay tuned to their little voices and follow their lead.
Our adventures have included pulling over on the side of a road to see some cows in a field to pretending we were turtles in the grocery store looking for food to driving to another state just to see the sign that says Kentucky.
ONE LAST THING
The most important rule….I don’t tell them it is a YES day. This seems crucial to the fun at this point in their lives. It’s like Christmas on their face each time a random comment of theirs is met with, “Ok, let’s go”. As they get older, I may let them in on the fun and see what happens, but for now it is such a refreshing day of bonding between us. They feel heard and valued and I feel like a present and intentional mom, even for a small moment, but it is enough to rejuvenate all of us and get us moving in a good direction for a while.