My kids’ class teacher sent this note –
Make sure that your child gets Valentine for everyone. I do not want broken hearts because of someone not getting a Valentine.
It was pretty straightforward! And I understood that not getting Valentine would make a kid unhappy and none of us want that to happen to our children, but I did not anticipate the liberating experience writing Valentines would be.
I got a StarWars Valentine stock, and helped my kid write names of his classmates. With each name he wrote, he had a story to tell. He was super excited to write Valentines for the friends he adored, and they were the first ones finished with heart stickers pasted next to their names. Then came the turn of writing Valentines for the classmates he was nonchalant about, and he wrote their names, somewhat silently and put a heart next to their names as well. The last was the kids he felt uncomfortable with for varying reasons. A little reluctant to begin with, he talked about those experiences; and soon he pasted hearts next to their names as well. To me this was profound! The gesture signified that my kid has moved on. He was no longer harnessing unpleasantness inside his little heart for any of his classmates.
Only if we can replicate his behavior in our daily lives, both personal and professional, and share a valentine with the people, we do not see eye to eye. It was the moment of enlightenment, and I understood the precise reason for writing Valentines. So this post!
Sharing the love with the people we are fond off comes rather naturally; however, the real challenge is to share this positive emotion with the people we’ve lost connection with or the relations gone passive or rancid. The gesture of pasting a heart next to those people requires work on our side– to let go of the previous unpleasant experience(s), if any, and offer another opportunity for the fractured relationship(s) to mend and bloom. This practice would lighten our heavy hearts by chucking out resentments and negativity; thus freeing us to accept the goodness life has to offer.
I am grateful for the teacher’s directive that made every child in the class feel included and loved. It gave the children an opportunity to set free of their emotional baggage, and spread the joy of giving love in their special ways.
Indeed we adults have much to learn from children, and this was yet another learning for me.
Pass love my amigos! This world needs it!