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All kids need to feel acceptance.

It means loving your children as they are.

And that means not planning out their whole future when they are five with lessons as a toddler to insure they make the high school soccer team, or using flashcards when they barely can talk to hedge bets about getting into stellar colleges, and worrying about them being fantastic at everything.

It means carving out time to let kids be. To let kids be who they are.

To me that means being prepared when you have the idea of signing your child up for something, to change that idea to one of signing yourself up to listen better to the messages your children send you all day long. When kids say they want to sit and play with toys, or a game, or to read a book, or color, or go outside together, or any of the other wonderful things kids want to do, parents should follow along.

Follow your kids to the land of suspending living where make-believe rules. Challenge yourself to sit still long enough to visit your child’s life when it isn’t being run by an adult and see who he really is.

And then see if you don’t just love who they are.