Intentional Families recognize the importance of having fun as a family. Creating special family holiday traditions is a great way to accomplish this. Whether the event is religious like Passover and Easter, or secular, holidays are important events in a family’s life.
As adoptive families, we have a unique interest in including both our personal traditions as well as those traditions that stem from our child’s birth culture. Why not become a family with a global perspective? Open your celebrations to include influences from around the world. Embrace your differences as well as your commonalities. This perspective encourages tolerance and respect. It sends a message of inclusion that emphasizes relationship instead of a biological connection.
Whenever families gather for a good time, energies run high, excitement increases and noise levels skyrocket. Remember, this can overwhelm some kids, especially those with Tough Starts or trauma histories. Create agreements and strategies that allow them to separate from the chaos, regroup, and self-regulate. This pre-planning empowers your child and demonstrates your belief in their ability to handle things. It also reinforces your relationship because it respects their needs over an obligation to participate.
Ensure that your child feels welcome, validated, and empowered. Stay mindful and observant. Even the most enjoyable activities might have trigger memories of unpleasant events from a child’s past. Think beyond the obvious—music, food, activities, loud voices—any of these may trigger hurtful memories. Respect your child’s past while you work together to build new memories, healthy connection and have fun. Add deposits to the Family Memory Bank, ones that you will treasure and revisit for a lifetime.
A loving, permanent family is worth celebrating!