I have recently been observing many children and they seem so frail. They are not only frail physically, with spindly arms and legs (and no, I don’t want them to be fat!) but no hint or curve of any muscle mass. They don’t seem to be able to carry anything for themselves. They appear to have low endurance for running and playing and tend to pick sedentary things to do.
Many times, they also seem frail emotionally, falling apart at the least hint of anything not going the way they think it should. Now, this absolutely can be “normal” for small children under the age of 9 who are going through stages of developmental disequilibrium. I think of children as having an excess of emotion when they are under the age of nine. So, it is up to your discernment as a parent to decide if your child’s emotional state is normal for his or her age or if it is something that indeed needs “balancing out.”
Here are some ideas to help bolster up the seemingly frail child:
- STOP TALKING! Especially tone down your discussion of world events, crime, family drama in front of this child. Offer limited choices. This child needs to heal and really needs you to carry this weight of what they will wear or eat, and other little choices. And before you decide this idea is ridiculous, try it and see if it changes anything in your family. :)
- Watch your language – please stop commenting in front of your child about how sensitive, high needs, etc they are. You are giving them an image of themselves that you yourself are creating!
- No media. See if you can cut back on your own personal use of media in front of this child.
- Lots of time outside in nature for playing, wandering, dreaming and doing more physical tasks such as walking on a log over a stream, climbing, etc.
- Gardening is very healing.
- FAMILY times of doing ACTIVE things – hiking, roller skating, ice skating, bike riding
- Warmth – warming foods, nourishing foods and warm layers. Hats, warm shoes.
- Emotional warmth – tell this child you LOVE them. Meditate and pray over this child whilst they are asleep at night.
- Adjust your own attitude – picture this child as rosy-cheeked and zooming around. Tell your child several times a day how fast they are, how strong their arms and legs are, how helpful they are.
- De-mechanize your home so they have something to DO. Wash dishes by hand at least once a day, rake instead of using that leaf blower thing, hang out laundry to dry, plant and garden and let them haul things around.
- Stories – nourishing stories of nature for the four year old, simple nature stories and fairy tales for the five-year old, moving into even more fairy tales for the six and seven year old, and I even like Russian fairy tales for the eight year old and Asian fairy tales for the nine-year old.
- Healing COLOR. For a prime example, check out these beautiful and nourishing photographs of a workshop Suzanne Down did: http://junipertreepuppets.com/color-and-light-puppetry-with-photos/ Just gorgeous!
- Expect your child to contribute with chores and in areas of pet and household care with your physical presence right there – the child can weave in and out if they are under the age of 7, but do the same thing at the same time every day for this child’s chore.
- REST and SLEEP times. Warmth – tuck one of those cherry stones in their bed if need be or a hot water bottle, warm flannel sheets, warm pajamas. Calm nighttimes where the house goes to sleep and you all say good night to the world.
- Check into any of the following as they resonate with you: flower essences, homeopathy, cranial sacral work for support for your growing and developing child.
I hope this is helpful to you all.