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0:00:11 - Allison
Hey everyone, I'm Allison and I'm Cindy. Welcome to this episode of Kintsugi Conversations. So, mom, I just have to let you know Jackson is somewhere running rampant through the house, so there it's a possibility that you might hear him. You know, I always try to record, like during his nap time, but actually him and DJ just got back from the gym and so I heard them come in, so there's a chance that there might be a Jackson appearance today. Okay, so Jackson is working out Apparently. Apparently he's working out these days. You know, I don't intervene when it comes to their father and son time, and DJ said that they were going to the gym and I just said okay, you know, okay, sounds good to me.

So I want to start today by just sharing something that happened with Harper a while back. So, mom, you know Harper well, so this probably won't come as a surprise to you, but she is very, very, very particular with just about everything. I mean, she's particular about what she wears, how she looks. She wants things to look a certain way. You know, she is a little lady and can be a little bit of a perfectionist, which I know that she inherited from both of us.

0:01:27 - Cyndi

0:01:28 - Allison
So a few weeks back, we were, you know, headed out to run errands and it was lightly sprinkling outside, so definitely not pouring down rain, but lightly sprinkling. It wasn't the type of rain where, like, we needed an umbrella or anything like that, but it was like the type of rain where, like, you're going to have a few raindrops, you know, touch your body and your clothes, whatever.

0:01:50 - Cyndi

0:01:52 - Allison
So we're on the way to the car and I think Harper had on. You know that like rainbow striped skirt that she loves, Like she's like obsessed with it. It's her favorite skirt. She wants to wear it every day.

0:02:01 - Cyndi

0:02:02 - Allison
So she had on that and she had on a pink t-shirt with it and, of course, like the outfit sticks out in my mind because of what happened. So we're walking to the car and it's drizzling and as soon as we get outside she's like oh no, it's raining. I don't like the rain. And I'm like, well, I know, harper, but you know it's raining Sometimes. We're just going to run to the car. So she's like, okay.

So we get to the car and she notices that she has a couple of raindrops on her shirt and what I tell you guys, that all broke loose. It did Like she was like oh my God, like I have rain on my shirt, it's wet. Oh my gosh, I need a new shirt, I need to change. And I'm like well, harper, mommy has some raindrops on her, on my shirt too, like it's going to dry, it's okay, but she was not trying to hear it. And like the meltdown that ensued it did worry me a little bit. Not that it was abnormal, like it was a normal toddler meltdown, but gosh, just that having raindrops on her shirt would send her into this much of a tailspin. And you know, stuff like that happens with Harper frequently. Like she's the type where, if she's coloring or drawing and she messes up, you know mom, she wants to ball the whole paper away, up through the whole paper.

0:03:20 - Cyndi

0:03:21 - Allison
She gets very, very upset, and I definitely feel like she gets these perfectionist tendencies from me, and so I do worry a little bit about her. You know developing anxiety, you know.

0:03:35 - Cyndi
Yes, I noticed a little of that too when we were in Japan and she was trying to draw certain things and she couldn't get it just right and she would just get so, so frustrated and, like you said, it would have a meltdown and would like just, you know, toss the whole thing. It would just like really really just get very, very anxious and would just, like you know, like I said, just have a meltdown. And you know, we would like really really just have to like, kind of like calm her down. So that is kind of a you know, a thing that she is. You know she wants to get everything right. You know that's just her thing. It has to be perfect, it has to be right. So we do need to kind of figure out a way to work on that with her. I'm not quite sure what the answer is, but it is something that we do need to probably start to address with her now.

0:04:27 - Allison
I agree because, I mean, mom, I think that we can both, you know, say that I was kind of the same way, you know, when it came to wanting things to be perfect. When do you feel like you first started to see those types of behaviors in me?

0:04:43 - Cyndi
I started to notice those things with you Probably, I want to say, around the same age as Hepburn. It may not have been as drastic as with her, but you definitely had the same. You know you were very opinionated as to, you know how you wanted to dress, how you wanted to look, and if things didn't look the way you want them to look, then you know you would certainly like get an attitude about it and what you know, do the stop your foot and the whole little, you know little attitude thing. You didn't really have the meltdowns, but you definitely would. You know, let your opinions be known.

0:05:26 - Allison
Yeah, I mean, I remember as a kid like wanting things to be perfect and to look perfect and kind of, you know, feeling a certain type of way if they weren't what I deemed as perfect, like I always wanted to be the best, I wanted my grades to be the best, I wanted my projects to be the best, and I remember having a hard time. You know when things worked, how I deemed perfect. You know, I feel like for me of course I don't necessarily remember this, but of course, just from like hearing stories XYZ, I do know that for me, like my anxiety might have possibly started when I was what? Two? Was I two when you had your hysterectomy?

You were three, three, yeah, and I don't remember much of it, but I do know, just from like hearing certain stories, that I kind of like developed a list at that time and that, even though I might not have been vocal about it, I definitely had some fears about like where you were, if you were coming back, like all of that stuff. And so you know it's funny that like even not being able to remember you know, that seems to be where my anxiety could have began. You remember me being like very anxious and worried at that time, or was I kind of just Well?

0:06:54 - Cyndi
more so than that. I think you were okay during that time, when I remember you becoming more anxious was actually when you, when I went to California to have my surgery on my back and that would have been you were about, that was around. I want to say you were probably around maybe five or so. Okay, I remember that time, five or six during that time and I would have been was in California. I want to say maybe like a week to 10 days. And you know I of course explained to you, you know, that mommy was going to be gone, for you know a while. You know that I had to have a procedure done and that you know you wouldn't be able to see me but mommy would talk to you on the phone. But still, for you know, I was, you know, basically your world, we were together, right, you know, nonstop. So for you, even though you knew I was going to be gone, you know for you not to be able to like physically, like see me for days on end, it was kind of like, you know, dramatic. You know for you, you know I was there one day and then the next day I was like sort of like disappeared and I remember you did kind of.

You know, when I came home you kind of you had started to stutter, yeah, and being somewhat vocal for a while, and I remember taking you to like a speech therapist and all of that kind of stuff, just trying to figure out you know where this was coming from. And I remember they were just saying that they thought it was, you know, ask if anything traumatic had happened. And I was like you know, I don't know if it did not necessarily. But then thinking back it was like, oh you know, well, I did, I was in California for a while and I was going to have this you know back surgery, whatever. And they were like, oh well, you know that could have been it. And then, as suddenly as that came on, all of a sudden it just stopped.

0:08:52 - Allison
So I guess you know what. I have no recollection of seeing a speech therapist, Like that's all new to me, Like this, is that's really cool. I wonder if I like blocked it yeah you know it could have been.

0:09:03 - Cyndi
So I guess that was your way of dealing with the anxiety of me. You know, in your mind, just, I guess, disappearing because again, I guess, for you know, even though you know you were five, six years old, but you know, you thought that, you know, as far as you know, your mom just disappeared.

0:09:19 - Allison
So yeah, for sure, it's funny how, like you know, anxiety and anxious symptoms kind of like present in children, right, like how it can be. I mean it's the same as for adults but it can be like a little bit different. Like I mean, obviously, like those issues with my speech, they were probably like a presentation of my trauma and my anxiety based on, you know, the uncertainty that I had about, like your, your departure. I'll say I mean not that you weren't coming back but, you're not being there.

I think that sometimes it can be easy to miss those things that our kids, like you know, we kind of excuse it, like oh, whatever, like she's just five, like she'll get over it, whatever. But you know, these things are important and, like we, as parents, have to, like, be mindful and pay attention to how these things impact our kids and, of course, like it seems like you did, like you made sure that you, like you sought the care of professionals to make sure that everything was okay with me, you know.

0:10:20 - Cyndi
Right, yeah, cause I mean, even though I tried to explain to you, you know where I was and what was going on with me, still you know it still affected you. And then, once I got back and I did notice that there was something going on with you, I did, you know, try to make sure you know after the fact that everything was okay. And even for myself, I don't necessarily remember, you know, feeling anxious or going through, you know, anxiety periods, but I do remember as a kid I would like just start like uncontrollably, like just itching. My body would just start itching just uncontrollably.

And I'm sure you know I don't remember a lot about my childhood. I basically have locked out my entire childhood from you know. Basically, you know I have like little spurts of memory from like just little bitty things basically until like seventh grade. You know I don't really remember my childhood, but I do remember like this period of time where I would just start like uncontrollably, like just itching, and I'm sure that was just like anxiety coming out from like whatever periods of things that I was going through. But you know, back then you know again, you know parents didn't necessarily take children to therapists to deal with whatever issues they may have had in the households, and so I'm so glad now, though, that parents are starting to talk to their children more, are starting to listen to their children and are starting to take their children to get the help that they need, not only for themselves as individuals, but also in group settings.

0:12:01 - Allison
Right, exactly, exactly. So, you know. Let's talk about some of the symptoms of anxiety in kids and again, this can look a lot like the symptoms of anxiety in adults. So it can be frequent worrying or fear. It can be trouble concentrating, like if your kid seems, you know, distracted or uninterested in their normal activities. It can be difficulty falling and suffering. It can be difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep. It can be cleanliness to caregivers, which of course we all are familiar with the term separation anxiety. And it can also be like extreme obsession with safety, like asking a lot of questions about, you know, activities, like more than normal and constantly seeking, you know, like reassurance, like is this safe, am I going to be okay? And it can also be irritability and acting on edge, which of course we know that toddlers can be irritable and act on edge anyway, you know, more than the normal for your child.

So all of these things can signify, you know, anxiety in kids. And I definitely do feel like, when it comes to the frequent worrying and fear, I see that with Harper in kind of her, like perfectionism. It seems like she's afraid of what will happen if something is not perfect. She's not necessarily clingy or, you know any clingier than other kids. She doesn't really ask a lot of questions about safety or seem like obsessed with safety or have trouble concentrating. But I definitely can see it in like the frequent worrying or fear and the acting on edge. Like I said, when it comes to times when things are not perfect, she can kind of you know, kind of go off the deep end a little bit, for lack of a little better word.

0:13:45 - Cyndi
But I wonder where that just comes from, because we always just tell her you know, we just want you to do your best. No one has ever might bust at her or chastise her if something has not been you know for lack of a better word Right. We never tell her that anything is wrong.

0:14:01 - Allison
So I even wonder where that even in me comes from and you know I think that that's important for like parents to know and also I had to remind myself is like we don't necessarily cause our kids to be anxious. You know, like, yes, we're pinpointing in me, like when we saw like anxious symptoms maybe start to develop, but it's not necessarily that what you did or didn't do caused me to develop anxiety. And I think it's the same for Harper. Unfortunately, I think some of those propensities for anxiety are just in us. You know what I'm saying Like being being type A, like people that have type A personalities and are kind of more rigid by the book organized planners. Unfortunately, while those things are great, sometimes they can make us just more likely to develop anxiety. And I think it's the same for kids as well, you know.

0:14:52 - Cyndi
Well, that's poor baby has it coming and going. Because she got it for me and for you there, because we are both like planners, want everything to just be, you know, straight line. You know how I am. I will stay parting your hair for 10 minutes trying to get the line straight.

0:15:09 - Allison
Exactly, exactly. And you know, I think like that's where it comes from. And you know it's so funny because I tried really hard to parent my kids without projecting my feet, Feelings or my you know, my wishes onto them too much. But, like you said, with hair right, like I am so quick to tell Harper like uh-uh, don't roll around your hair, your hair is perfect. You're going to mess it around, you're going to mess it up if you're rolling around on your head, Like let's put your scarf on. And although I don't mean to communicate to her that like her hair needs to be perfect at all times, like I kind of am right, like I'm kind of communicating to her that like it's an issue if she doesn't look perfect, you know, or that's how we do too.

0:15:50 - Cyndi
You know, sleep with your scarf on, so your hair stays smooth. But I mean, who cares? But that's what we do. So it's the same thing, right, and it's so much it's so much more than just hair.

0:16:01 - Allison
Like I can also remember, you know, with Harper, like when she is coloring right, like, of course, like that's her free time to express herself, but if she does, like you know, draw a letter backwards, let's say, which is a totally age appropriate thing to do at 3. Like I'm very quick to be like, oh Harper, like that's a great R, but like, can you do it this way? Instead, if you know what I'm saying, and even though I'm not trying to communicate it with her, to her, like I wonder, mom, am I then telling her like your R wasn't good enough?

0:16:32 - Cyndi
You know, yeah, but I mean it is, but it's not because you want to have them do it the correct way, and you also, in the back of your mind, to you're making sure that there's not a learning disability, but during it, the wrong way, you want to make sure that this is not a mistake. So there's a lot that's also ingrained in that. So, like I said, it's a good and bad, so there's no right and wrong.

0:17:01 - Allison
Yeah, I just know that. You know for me, okay, I personally pinpoint like the start of my anxiety to when I was in high school and I'm sure you remember this, mom, one of my close friends' dads passed away when we were in high school and I developed an irrational I won't say it wasn't irrational because whatever but I developed a fear that, like my dad was gonna pass away next. And remember mom, like I like slept with you. I mean I was like 16 years old, like I was, you know, I wasn't like a little kid, but I remember like sleeping with you for like a few weeks after that happened, and it wasn't even like I was sleeping with you because, like I needed your comfort. It was more so that, like you know, dad often came in late and I was sleeping with you so that I would know when he got home, so like I would know that he was okay. You don't remember this. You don't remember me sleeping with you after, you know, my friend's dad died I don't remember which friend this was even.

0:17:59 - Cyndi
Can you give me an initial?

0:18:03 - Allison
C L. Okay, yeah, all right back to the podcast. Okay, so, like you know it's crazy because, like to you, it might have been like, oh, she's just so. You know she's so like bothered by this. Like she's sleeping with me for comfort and I was bothered by it and I did feel for my friend and I was worried about her, but it was more so my anxiety and like needing to know when my own dad came in to know that he was okay. Like I remember being so anxious and so worried and just having this at the time like a rational fear, like, oh my gosh, like people's dads are just dying, like my dad's gonna die too.

0:18:38 - Cyndi
Okay, you know. And.

0:18:42 - Allison
That's when for me, like when I go back and you know, in work with my own therapy, I'm like, no, my own therapist. I'm like that's when my anxiety began.

0:18:50 - Cyndi
Okay, Okay, well, I didn't, I didn't know that, and you never again, but, being who you are, you would not have vocalized that to me. Yeah, so that, but that does I mean, and that makes perfect sense, though, for being a kid too, even though you were 16, being a kid, that makes sense, though that was something that was traumatic. That was someone, that one, that someone that was close to you. So, yeah, that all makes sense.

0:19:13 - Allison
Right, and you know, of course I still deal with anxiety. Now I'm very vocal about the fact that you know I can have a thought and it will just literally spiral uncontrollably. Like I deal with pretty frequent anxiety and have, honestly, probably since I was 16 or 17, off and on, but more recently, like in my adult age, especially, you know, now that I have kids of my own. Like my anxiety usually starts with like a fear minus, pretty much all wrapped up in fear that something is going to happen to someone that I love, but my thoughts just spiral and spiral and spiral. And of course, with my background in therapy, I know all of the right things to do. You know I know about cognitive behavioral therapy and the self-talk and all of that, but of course it's easier said than done, especially on yourself, and so anxiety is something that I definitely deal with. Mom, do you feel like you deal with anxiety?

0:20:07 - Cyndi
Yes, I definitely deal with anxiety. I think I started to deal with anxiety once I had you, but part of that too, I think, starts with once you do become a mother, because your primary focus then becomes balanced on someone that you love more than yourself. So that then becomes your primary focus and want to keep that other person you know safe and someone else that you will give your life for, and always worrying about that other person and always just, I guess that doom and gloom or something happening to that person. But my anxiety comes in. You know, I can feel it when it's coming, because I think I've clarified you before and been like, you know, just out of the blue Are you OK? Because I can.

Just it's that feeling that just something is going to happen and it's just that feeling that something is going to happen to someone somewhere, and it's just that you can't just shake it. Just that heartbeat, that feeling in the pit of your stomach. It's like I can't catch my breath, you break out into that sweat. But I also get that feeling like if I'm going to be late for an appointment or something, I'm going to be late for an appointment or something I get. That makes me very anxious too. So it's just that makes me anxious. It's just those little things, that's just. And I am also very OCD, so that you know it's just little things. And the older I get, I think sometimes the worst I get. That's why I need to live by myself. I think it's just little things that kind of send me over the edge sometimes. So I just try to, you know, take a chill pill now to the older I get and be like OK, the word is not going to come to an end. You know things aren't done a certain way.

0:22:03 - Allison
So that's. I was going to ask, like what do you feel, like you're OCD about?

0:22:08 - Cyndi
I just like things in a certain order. I can't manage and exist with like clutter. That just, it just. You see, I had to take a deep breath just then. It just like right, it just takes my breath away. I just I just cannot literally function. And it just like I just cannot, it just.

0:22:32 - Allison
I just can't and see, in a lot of ways, like that sounds a lot like Harper, like you know, like she spilled something on her shirt, like she just cannot, like she cannot deal with it and she needs a new shirt. And like the day will not go on and, of course, like I'm making light of it, but like it's really not funny, like for her. I imagine in her head it's like the day will not go on right If I have on this shirt, like if I am going to have a good day, like I need a different shirt. Well, again.

0:23:00 - Cyndi
I have been with her and she was eating something and she spilled one little chocolate, something dribble, and it was like a whole production and I was like you know, baby, it's going to be, oh, no, no. So I was like, ok, you know what it's going to make you feel better, let's just go and change it.

And so that was done, it was, it was fine. I remember, in Japan, the day it was raining and we were leaving to go somewhere and she slipped on the steps and got her pants wet and we were like, no, by the time we get to where we're going, it will dry, and by the time, with the rain and the tears, it was just a whole big mess, and I think we ended up going by her another outfit because she was just beside herself. So you know, she gets again some of that from me, some of that from you, and the poor baby just didn't stand a chance. I know, I know. Oh, and the fourth thing was she has kids. Her kids are going to get it from her. So you know, but we just have to keep talking to her, though, and just tell her that you know it's OK, you know everything is not always going to be as you want it in that moment, but it's OK that it doesn't have to be Right exactly.

0:24:29 - Allison
And it's okay. So of course you know we've been kind of hee-hee-ing and ha-haw-ing about Harper's experience and while it is like funny and lighthearted, it's also very serious and I don't want to seem like we are like poking fun at her, because that's not it at all.

0:24:45 - Cyndi
No, not at all.

0:24:47 - Allison
I'm honestly, mom, just curious as to, like, what your thoughts were. You know about it, and it actually reassures me to hear that you kind of have noticed this in her too, because I know that I'm not just, like you know, crazy or projecting my own anxiety onto her and what she has going on, you know Right.

0:25:04 - Cyndi
No, I've noticed it in her too and, like I said, I noticed it in you when you were younger, just not to be probably the extreme that you know. I see it in Harper, but I also noticed Harper's little temper thing too, which we'll talk about that later. That's a whole never episode, right, that's a whole never episode, for sure. I mean, I'm not sure that's in Harper, but we just need to find a way to let her know that everything is not going to be, you know, perfect at all times, but that she is perfect just the way she is and that is okay. For everything not to align just the way she thinks that it needs to at any particular time.

0:25:47 - Allison
You're 100 percent right. And of course, you know, in school and in working with clients in therapy who were, you know, anxious, or children who were dealing with anxiety, we did learn a lot about how to support parents in dealing with things like this. And you just touched on the number one thing, and that is that, like, as parents, we have to validate our kids' feelings and we have to offer them reassurance without being dismissive. And so now I'm very careful in my language with Harper, because, while I might feel like the rain drops on her shirt are not a big deal to her, it is a big deal and it, you know, it does start to bring up some big feelings for her. And so I have to be very careful as a mom to meet her right where she is and to validate what she's feeling while offering reassurance.

So that might be like saying something like okay, harper, like I understand that you're very, very upset that your shirt is wet and I understand that that is making you feel frustrated or making you feel worried or making you feel whatever it seems like it is making her feel, and then I can say you know, however, baby, I promise you that the rain drops are going to dry soon, and I promise you that the rain drops on your shirt are not going to mess up your day and that you will be able, you know, to move on with your day just fine as soon as the rain drops dry. Rain dries so so quickly on our clothes, and so, you know, offering her that reassurance, while also validating that I understand how it's making her feel, and not not dismissing, you know, by saying things like girl, like it's rain, it'll dry your fire.

0:27:26 - Cyndi

0:27:27 - Allison
Not saying things like that.

0:27:28 - Cyndi
Exactly and I remember you know, telling you always to, you know that you know your feelings are your feelings and they are valid feelings and to never feel bad for feeling the way that you feel about anything. Just always trying to validate the way that you felt about anything and telling you that you could always share your feelings with me and, you know, not make you feel bad for feeling the way that you were feeling about anything.

0:27:53 - Allison
Exactly, and I still feel that with you as an adult. So that went a long way. I still feel like you know. I can tell you how I feel about something, even if it does sound quote unquote crazy, I can still let you know. You know what I'm feeling and that it's okay to feel whatever I am feeling.

0:28:10 - Cyndi
You know what I'm saying.

0:28:11 - Allison
And I want to definitely communicate with that to her. I want to definitely communicate that to her as well. Similarly, like just like we learn as adults in dealing with anxiety, it's really important that we teach our kids to practice mindfulness and to be present in the moment instead of like worrying about the past or worrying about the future. So that may look like saying okay, harper, you know, I understand that your shirt got rain on it. The rain is going to dry. What would you like to listen to while the rain dries? Like bringing her back to the present moment instead of worrying about what happened 10 minutes ago or worrying about you know what's to come. Something to bring her back into the present.

0:28:49 - Cyndi
Right, right, you know that's a good thing and I know you and she. You let her listen to a lot of her Disney songs and whatnot you know are in the car. She has her little play list and you tell her all the time, you know, what would you like to listen to? You know in the car. So that is a good distraction for her as well.

0:29:06 - Allison
Exactly, and, of course, like that's going to be different for every kid, but usually like tapping into our senses, whether it be something to look at, helping to listen to, something, to taste all of that thing. All those things can help us to. You know, just practice mindfulness and bring our minds back to the present moment. Similarly, I know, in therapy with my therapist and in working with clients, one thing that we really, really, you know, kind of harp on when it comes to anxiety is reframing your thinking. So, you know, going from faulty thoughts to more accurate thinking. Do you remember working on that, mom in therapy, ever when it came to anxiety?

0:29:42 - Cyndi
No, no. Well, first of all explain that a little bit in more detail too, for me.

0:29:48 - Allison
So basically, you know, when we are anxious, we tend to have irrational thoughts and so we tend to like, like how we were both saying that our thoughts spy right. We tend to go from, oh my husband is late getting home to oh my husband is late getting home, he must be dead in a ditch on the side of the road because he had a car accident, blah, blah, blah. Like our heads take us so far left. And so basically, reframing our thoughts and replacing those irrational thoughts with more rational thoughts is like okay, my husband is late, he could be late for a number of reasons. Just because he is late does not mean that anything bad is happening. Just bringing our heads back down to what is real and what is true instead of letting our minds just go totally back Okay, okay, that makes sense, that makes more sense.

0:30:39 - Cyndi
Yes, I do recall doing that, just like you said. Instead of just thinking the worst thing in the world has happened, you know being more logical and saying okay, instead of you know, like you said, you know something drastic has happened. You know, maybe you know he's late because you know he's had a flat tire. Or you know, maybe you know his meeting ran late and he just didn't get a chance to call, or you know, just something along those lines, instead of, like you said, the whole world has come to an end.

0:31:11 - Allison
So, exactly so, you know, going back to Harper and this wet shirt scenario, because it's the scenario that we're working with right now, you know, for her it might feel like, okay, my shirt is going to have these spots on it all day and I don't look cute anymore, you know, whatever I'm just, I'm just trying to think like a third, a three year old here. I don't really know what her thought is but you know, reframing that thought.

So, harper. So your shirt is a little wet, like what do we know about rain and water? When it lands on something Like what, what usually happens? Do our shirts usually stay wet all day, or do they usually dry and getting her to go back to like? Well, the last time I had water on my shirt, it did dry. And to replace whatever irrational fault he thought she's having with something that is more true, something that you know, that that she she knows is actually Right.

0:32:03 - Cyndi
Right, we just asked her. You know, the last time your shirt got wet didn't stay wet all day, or did it dry?

0:32:09 - Allison
you know exactly, so that she could remember.

0:32:12 - Cyndi
Oh, that's right, it did dry, so you're absolutely right. So just making her remember that you know, these things are temporary.

0:32:21 - Allison
And there are so many ways that we can, you know, reinforce these positive, healthy coping strategies. There are apps and games. There's one app that I used to always recommend to clients. It's called Mydier and it's actually an app for kids that teaches kids like coping strategies through having them play games and whatnot on their apps just to help them manage their emotions. So that's like a really good resource for parents.

And then, of course, therapy Therapy is great for kids and is something that definitely should not be. I mean, I do like I find it crazy because mom, like when I had the experience that I had with Harper and the rain, I remember mentioning to someone that I thought that she could maybe benefit from therapy because I was concerned about how much of a perfection that she is and that it was going to lead to anxiety. And they were like I mean it's crazy that you would think that she needs therapy. I mean nothing is wrong with her and I'm like I don't think anything is wrong with her. I just think that, just like as an adult I benefit from therapy, that maybe she could benefit from having someone besides me help her walk through like more positive coping strategies. So I don't really know, why is it that? You know, as adults we've kind of embraced therapy, but for kids, why is it that it's so, so frowned upon, right and it's not?

0:33:46 - Cyndi
as a symbol of anything being wrong. It's finding coping mechanisms and, truthfully, if as children we have formed better coping mechanisms, as adults we probably wouldn't need as much therapy now.

0:34:02 - Allison
Exactly, Exactly. I mean because I know like when you grew up, going to therapy probably wasn't even really exactly.

0:34:08 - Cyndi
It wasn't. It was not, but if I had had that option, I probably would be in a lot better shape now.

0:34:15 - Allison
Right, exactly, I mean me too, because when I grew up, I mean, I guess it was a little bit more acceptable than when you grew up, but it still wasn't really a thing, like people went to therapy, like when people died you know, like it wasn't like a thing, but like I made. Who knows if I would still be so anxious now as an adult if I had gone to therapy.

You know, as a kid, and of course, like I'm not blaming you for that, it just wasn't and there were not as many therapists then either.

0:34:42 - Cyndi
So you know there are. There are a lot more therapists now, but even back then there were not as many therapists and especially like therapists for kids. You know there were therapists for, I guess, my traveled kids or kids that were on my drugs and kids that were committing crimes and whatnot, but not just kids to like talk through, you know, like family issues or just issues within themselves.

0:35:08 - Allison
Exactly. I mean, I really wish that sending kids to therapy was something that people would really consider more, because it can have so many amazing benefits for helping our kids to just like learn these coping strategies. And, honestly, like, the most important thing for walking with your kids through anxiety is parental support, like, your child has to know that you see them and that you see what they're dealing with and you have to partner with them to walk through it because, quite honestly, they're just too young to like learn these coping skills.

0:35:39 - Cyndi
On their own Exactly. They need you in it with them. The most important thing for kids is to be seen, heard and validated 100%, 100%.

0:35:52 - Allison
And there's there's like a lot of different types of therapy that can be used to treat anxiety in kids, but one form of therapy that's like basically especially for kids, is play therapy. Have you heard of that? No, I haven't. So, basically, it allows the therapist to meet the child exactly where they are, at their level, to resolve problems and work through coping strategies and mechanisms through play because, as we know, like, playing is how kids communicate.

0:36:20 - Cyndi
Right, right.

0:36:21 - Allison
And so I mean it can be used for anxiety and a range of other issues, and all of the toys and activities are basically chosen specifically to strategically, you know treat whatever needs to be addressed through therapy, and so it's really actually like fun for the kids because they get to just play while the therapist is kind of I won't call it sneaky, but you know like working on this kind of assessing them. So and and like presenting things that are actually helping them learn the coping skills through however they're playing.

0:36:53 - Cyndi
I think that's great.

0:36:55 - Allison
Yeah, I think so too, and I think that is something that I'm going to look into for Harper, you know, just because I do think that having some coping skills could help her to just keep her perfectionist ways in check so that it doesn't spiral into anything more serious down the line.

0:37:11 - Cyndi
I think that would be a great idea for her. I really do.

0:37:15 - Allison
I think so too. So you know, there's a lot of resources like books. There's, you know, therapists, there's, apps like my dear, the one that I mentioned that can be immensely helpful for children not only working through anxiety, but a ton of other things as well. And as I have kind of been looking into these for my own child, I kind of put together a little list of resources for parents that you guys can access. We're going to definitely pop this onto the show notes so that you guys can take a look and you can find the resources that you think would help, you know, as you walk with your child through whatever it might be.

0:37:57 - Cyndi
But that sounds very, very good. I mean, I am a big proponent of therapy for myself. I believe that, you know, in order to be the best version of myself for my family, I need to be the best version of me. So, you know, talking about, you know, past traumas for me is the best way for me to, you know, be the best version of myself today for my, you know husband, my daughter, my grandkids and for me. So, you know, talking to my therapist helps me to relieve a lot of my anxiety and helps me to lead a happier life for myself. So I am a huge proponent of therapy.

0:38:46 - Allison
For sure, me too, me too, me too, and I hope that this episode was helpful for others who are walking through this. There is no shame ever in seeking help for yourself, for your child, for your family, for your marriage, but that's a different episode, for a different day.

0:39:03 - Cyndi
No, there is no shame in asking for help at all. It is one of the best things that you can do for yourself.

0:39:11 - Allison
Yes, we want to thank you guys so much for listening in and be sure to check out our show notes for that resource list that I mentioned.

0:39:19 - Cyndi
Thanks guys for listening guys.

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