Has this ever happened in your home? Your child does something they are SO proud of and you respond with “How could you use all the ______?” or “Honey, you just wasted all those ______.” or “Please be more careful! You just made a mess!” It has happened a hundred times in our home. My four year old is particularly creative and uses quite a few resources for her projects. It has become a weekly and sometimes daily issue.
However, as one day I sat thinking about it, I realized that the cost of the materials is so insignificant, especially when seen in comparison to the cost of shattering her excitement at her accomplishments.
To help us all with a little perspective, here’s a breakdown of what the true cost of childhood is:
Unrolling an entire roll of toilet paper–$0.47 per roll
Coloring on computer paper–$.006 per sheet
Using up the crayons–$0.04 per crayon
Spilling the milk as she pours it herself–$
Blowing up and popping the balloons just for fun–$.16 a balloon
Spilling the brand new bottle of bubbles that she was trying to blow for her sisters–$.10
Using up every single piece of sidewalk chalk on a full driveway of drawings–$1
Emptying a roll of tape over the course of several days to create all sorts of clothing creations, wrapped presents, and paper displays–$.50 a roll of tape
Needing a bandaid for every owie, even ones inside her mouth or on her eye–$.09 per bandaid
Her satisfaction at her creativity, her pride with trying something new, her comfort and happiness, her display of pure childhood genius–Priceless