Foster Fridays: Holiday Finds
A few weeks back, we shared with you some of the reasons why holidays can be difficult for children who’ve experienced trauma. I was concerned about how my son would handle our plans to travel and stay with family, especially since he’s been exhibiting new anxieties lately. Then I heard about “Holiday Stress Kits” that are put together for children who get overwhelmed by the festivities. (As an introvert I may need one for myself as well…)
Here are some cool things I found while planning his kit, and why I think they’d be helpful.
Fun water bottle: Dehydration can lend itself to stress and irritability. It causes insufficient blood-flow to the brain. Make sure your kiddos are drinking enough water!
Breathe With Me by Mariam Gates: Our little guy has been practicing taking deep breaths when he’s angry or frustrated. This helps kids focus and “reset,” as well as providing the brain with big waves of oxygen to better do its job! This book walks kids through different types of breaths. Chewable Lego necklace: We just ordered these for our son. He’s been gnawing away at his finger. Since he’s teethed a lot over the past year, I didn’t think much of it until it occured to me that he may be chewing out of stress. The texture of this particular necklace also provides sensory input. Squeezy toy: In addition to taking deep breaths, we’ve been reminding Little Guy to open and close his hands when he’s upset. Flexing/tensing and then releasing/relaxing muscles is a way to develop self-regulation of strong emotion. We got him this squishy glitter ball to help him work on this.
I hope this list is helpful to you as you celebrate with your family this year! We at FLM want to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy Holiday!