Hope is really into stories right now. I don’t mean storybooks (although she loves being read to) or fairy tales. Hope loves when The Civee or I tell her stories about things that happened to us.
Every time we drive past Riverside Hospital, she wants to hear about the time I broke my ankle (and thanks for bringing it up Hope, no it is not embarrassing all these years later). She loves the story of when The Civee sat on a pile of fire ants (I kind of like that one too). And she can almost go line-by-line about the time King Classic got hit by a home run at Yankee Stadium.
It’s great that she’s so interested in our lives. But there are times when she wants to hear the same story over and over. And I’m not only talking about night after night. I mean she wants to hear the same story again right after we’ve told it. And it’s not a stalling tactic to delay bed. She’ll ask to hear stories at dinner time, or on the way to the store.
But The Civee pointed out to me a while ago that this isn’t a bad thing. There was an article in the New York Times explaining that telling kids stories about people in their family gives them perspective about their family.
Decades of research have shown that most happy families communicate effectively. But talking doesn’t mean simply “talking through problems,” as important as that is. Talking also means telling a positive story about yourselves. When faced with a challenge, happy families, like happy people, just add a new chapter to their life story that shows them overcoming the hardship. This skill is particularly important for children, whose identity tends to get locked in during adolescence.
So telling and re-telling these (and other) stories is a good thing. And with some luck, generations of Chansky children will be able to tell the tale of when King Classic got hit by a home run at Yankee Stadium.