A Day Of YES!

November 14, 2010

When John Lennon met Yoko Ono, she was busy setting up her exhibit while he was walking around the art gallery, looking at her exhibit. He saw a ladder. He climbed the ladder. On top of the ladder was a hanging magnifying glass. He took the magnifying glass and looked through it to see what was on the ceiling. It was one word. The word was: Yes. That was the beginning of their courtship.

A challenge : see if you can have a day of yes – yes, even as a parent. Children hear no so often, imagine if they only heard yes for a day. You don’t have to tell them, let them discover it on their own or just keep it as your little secret. I understand sometimes you have to say no – especially when it comes to safety – but try to see if it is possible to say yes in a creative way, instead of no.

I challenged my husband to say yes for 24 hours on our last day of travel. (We just returned from hiking in Machu Pichu in Peru and travelling around in Spain.) My husband believes I never say no, especially to our daughter. I do say no, but I try to say no in ways that are yeses. I’ll give an example. My daughter wanted to have ice cream in Granada, Spain. We were rushing to get the airport bus. We didn’t have time for ice cream. Instead of saying no, I told my daughter I would love to get her ice cream. My concern is time. The bus comes every hour and if we miss it, we would have to wait for the next one. Would it be possible to get ice cream in Barcelona? She said, Yes! We were in Barcelona for two days and while we searched for delicious ice cream – we ate delicious tapas – we couldn’t find a place so I asked my daughter if we can have ice cream in Santa Monica. She said yes again. Now that we are back in Santa Monica, she has had small amounts of her favorite chocolate coconut ice cream. She loves Luna & Larry’s Dark Chocolate Organic Coconut Bliss. It is blissfully delicious and non-dairy – another bonus because my daughter has a slight allergy to dairy.

And my husband – did he meet the challenge of saying yes for 24 hours? He did! We were at the airport. It was a long day of travel. There are no non stops from Barcelona to Los Angeles. It was a full 20 hours in transit, including 3.5 hours for our one stop over. He was tired because he didn’t get any sleep on either of the  flights. There were some moments when he wanted to say no. I saw his face, but he didn’t. When we were at the airport in Barcelona, I wanted to get my daughter a magnet. We have a loose tradition of getting fridge magnets from wherever we go. He didn’t want to get that fridge magnet because, let’s face it – buying things at the airport is traditionally much more than you would buy on the street. Instead of saying no, he said, “I’m not saying anything.” He then passed me his remaining Euros and Mishy and I went and bought the magnet.

Another time that was trying for him was when we got some water. Mishy drank out of the bottle and then I drank out of the bottle too. I didn’t ask her. She likes to have her own things right now so she wanted us to buy another bottle of water. Instead of saying no, my husband asked Mishy if we would get her own cup. She said yes.

See if it’s easy or difficult to say yes for the day to your child(ren). If it’s easy, try a week of it. If it’s difficult, think about the times you were said no to when you were a child – write about it, express how that was for you.

Would you like inspirations to saying yes? Here is a book suggestion:

The Year of Yes by Maria Dahvana Headley

http://www.theyearofyes.com/

Some fun yes quotes:

Never allow a person to tell you no who doesn’t have the power to say yes.
Eleanor Roosevelt

I only have ‘yes’ men around me. Who needs ‘no’ men?
Mae West

For another perspective – read Scott Noelle’s Rich With Desire Daily Groove:

http://www.enjoyparenting.com/daily-groove/rich-with-desire

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