love Tag

A shelf grid of many Russian nesting dolls

Show Students Who They Could Become by Accepting Their Full Selves

By Justin Minkel

My mom is a play therapist and a miracle worker. Her secret power sounds simple: She absolutely accepts children as they are. Not as their teachers, classmates or parents wish they would be. As they actually are — in all their turbulent, disruptive, exasperating glory.

The children she works with throw rocks, scream in class and bite the other kids. When they throw rocks at her, she says, “You are really strong to be able to throw those rocks so far!” When they scream as loud as they can, she says, “That’s amazing that you can get out all your anger like that. I wish I could do that!”

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2016 Youth Frontiers Minnesota Character Award Winner, Samantha HoangLong, caregiving for her grandfather

Making Grandpa Proud

By Samantha HoangLong, Youth Frontiers’ 2016 Character Award Winner

I was only 16 years old. Yet I was down on my knees, changing the diaper of an 89-year-old Vietnamese man.

Every day when I approached him, holding a clean diaper in my hand, I hoped that the dirty one was “light.” Sometimes he’d pee too much and soak the diaper, making everything around him wet. I would have to wipe him down and change his clothes.

At 16, I should have been hanging out with friends and staying up late watching Netflix. But I realized how this old man must feel — incapable of doing a simple task. A young woman had to change his diaper for him.

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My Daughter, My Path to Reflection

By Joe Cavanaugh, Founder and CEO

Before my daughter Tess was born, I was always running from here to there, trying to accomplish as much as possible in what felt like as little time as possible. Sitting quietly, reflecting or meditating do not come naturally to me. Even when I would try to pause, far too often, the everyday pressures and daily grind would begin to creep in, swiftly ending my attempts to slow down and breathe.READ MORE

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Marriage Advice from a Rookie

I am relatively new to marriage. Jane and I are approaching our 13th wedding anniversary. Many of my friends have been married for over 25 years and many of my mentors have been married for over 50 years. Thus, in some ways, I am a rookie. Today is Valentine’s Day — a day when it is nearly impossible not to reflect on your own love relationship. I am acutely aware that my marriage to Jane is Tess’ most significant model for love and relationship. READ MORE

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