“Christopher Stories,” Ensign, Feb. 1987, 65
“Tell me a Christopher Story, Mom,” is the request I get from my three-year-old nearly every night at bedtime.
He came up with the idea one night when he decided that the best story of all would be one about himself. In the beginning these were merely fun fantasies, but with time they evolved into something more meaningful.
The ideas for the stories come from his own needs and deal directly with his apprehensions. In a Christopher Story, he can picture himself dealing successfully with a situation he may be anticipating. If he will soon be staying with a new baby-sitter, I will tell him a story about preparing to visit her, what he will take, what he will see and do there, and even what her front yard looks like. I will also include how he will feel there and how he will feel when I come to get him.
For days afterwards, he discusses the stories and rehearses the important concepts with such statements as “I missed you at the baby-sitter’s. But I knew you were coming back soon, so I played with the blocks.”
When I was expecting a baby, many of the bedtime Christopher Stories dealt with coming events. We shared stories about Mom and Dad packing suitcases and going to the hospital while Christopher spent the night at Grandma’s. We also had stories about his reactions to the new baby. In the stories, sometimes he loved the baby and helped Mom. Sometimes the baby’s crying woke him up. And sometimes he wished the baby would go away and let him be the baby again.
In all these stories I try to emphasize the changes that he will need to deal with as he grows and has new experiences. But I always reassure him that our love for him will remain unchanged—and that we will still find time for Christopher Stories.—Kathleen Christopher Null, Huntington Beach, California