Back-to-School Anxiety: How "The Kissing Hand" Helps Ease Separation Anxiety by Elisa A. Schmitz 30Seconds
Kids anxious about school? My identical twin daughters recently reminded me of something that helped them get through separation anxiety. When they went to preschool, it was tough for all of us. They'd cry and hold on to my waist and legs so I wouldn't leave. It got so bad that, often, we were all in tears at each drop-off.
A friend gave me a wonderful book called The Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn. It's about a little raccoon about to start kindergarten. Chester Raccoon is anxious about going to kindergarten, so his mother kisses his hand as a way for him to carry her love all day. So sweet!
I took this idea a step further by putting on red lipstick before kissing my daughters' hands, leaving bright red kisses behind. With a vivid memento of Mom to hold on to, they were able to transition to school more easily. We still do this sometimes, and it always seems to ease anxiety (and make us smile).
I gave my teenage daughter a “kissing cheek” by accident when she headed off to college last week. I realized after I kissed her cheek to say goodbye, I unintentionally left a red lipstick mark. I went to wipe it off and she stopped me. “Leave it there,” she said. So I kissed her again in the same place, to make the kiss darker. She smiled and we both got emotional, thinking about the memory of “The Kissing Hand.” I guess she hasn’t outgrown it yet (and neither have I)!
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