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Make Sure They Know Who They Are

Since my oldest son was two I’ve been telling him who he is. Shortly after, I started sharing these affirmations with his slightly younger brother as well. We call it “doing their truths”, and we do it every morning.

I tell my beautiful sons:

Gaius/Gideon, you are a big boy
You are a good boy
You are a smart boy
You are a sweet boy
You are a handsome boy
You are a brave boy
And you are a KING!
You can do anything, with God’s help.
Your Mom, Dad, big/little brother, and your whole family love you very much.
So have a great day KING Gaius/Gideon!

I remember when my now 5-year-old was very young he started repeating a few of the words from his truth back to me, even though he was just learning to talk. It helped me see the importance of this practice I’d started – that he was absorbing it so early on.

I’ve talked about how my 3-year-old, is on the Autism spectrum. Some mornings it seems as if he’s barely paying attention to me telling him his truths, but I do it anyway. This past Thursday, we were running a bit behind getting ready. It seems everything school related is harder the closer we get to summertime. Instead of calmly speaking the affirming thoughts to him in his room, I started to rattle them off as walked him outside to his bus. Surprisingly, he started to say them with me. He knew his truths, well. He even knew which words I put the emphasis on. I was so proud, not because he’d memorized the words but because he’d connected with them. I  went inside the house and immediately sent a text to my husband. At the beginning of the school year, my littlest dude spoke very few words. A few months prior to that, he connected with people and what they said a lot less than we’d like. For him to speak these daily affirmations over himself may seem like a small deal – unless you realize that him speaking at all didn’t always seem like a given. For my husband and me, it was a reason to celebrate. I’m thankful that he knows who he is. 

We try as much as possible to tell both of our boys good things that are true about them. Even when correcting them, I’ve learned to speak good things when possible. At my big boys end of the year program, each class showed off a bit of what they’d learned during the year. Guy’s class had shirts that said the area they’d excelled in over the word “Genius”. I know that being called a genius, and being told he’s great at reading are not new messages. Their not things he only hears at school. He knows who he is. We are intentional about that.

I know that there will be a time, I hope in the distant future, where my sons start to receive messages that tell them things about themselves that are not positive or true. Everyone will have to battle these outside messages at some point, particularly black males. My objective and hope is that they will have received enough uplifting truth by the time that day comes that they are not permanently swayed by the lies.

I want to make sure they know who they are.

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