By Heather, Jayger’s Mom
In the last few posts, I’ve been responding to some pretty heavy material, like the ongoing water crisis in Flint, Michigan and the challenges of child nutrition. But when I dropped Jayger off at preschool this morning and saw all of the Valentine’s Day decorations in his classroom, it reminded me about why I started Tickle Water in the first place—out of love! Love for my son, love of a well balanced life, and teaching Jayger to love the simple things – like drinking water.
He and his classmates are busy working on Valentine’s Day art projects. And it shows! They’ve got cards stapled to the wall, hearts taped to the windows, gifts planned for their teachers, and, to Jayger’s great delight, there are cupcakes in the works, too. (Hopefully not too-too many!)
Personally, I’ve never been a big fan of Valentine’s Day. It always seemed like just a marketing ploy for stores to make money off of others’ rocky relationships – couples attempting to “make up” via roses and chocolates … or if you’re really lucky, a diamond necklace. I didn’t understand why we needed to single out one day to focus on love. Shouldn’t we love one another everyday? Alas, a lofty goal! In this day and age, we are so wrapped up in work, events, life, and especially social media with people we’ve never even met, that it not only good but necessary to pause and appreciate the real relationships in our lives. For me, that begins with the two loves of my life: my husband Adam and my son Jayger, but also the friends and family that are such important parts of our lives.
Valentine’s Day sure has taken on a new meaning now that I am a mother. It’s especially fun to celebrate with kids. With them, love is so pure, so honest, and so well intentioned. This week, I got to watch the kids cut out their construction paper hearts, laughing throughout the process. They appreciate their friends for who they are—without having judgment clouded by those things that can get in the way of adult relationships, like jobs, family backgrounds, and other social pressures. That’s one of those many areas where I feel I have much to learn from Jayger, being reminded to love people for who they are.
So, from me and everyone at Tickle Water, wishing you a very Happy Valentine’s Day.