A great article my husband wrote –
When is the last time you watched the movie Puppy Party twice over starting at 3am? If it’s been recently as an adult you may have noticed that the movie has essentially no plot. I mean sure, they say they’re going to have a party but they never really get around to it. It’s mostly just various breeds of puppies rolling in the grass barking and playing with one another. It’s probably safe to assume it wasn’t a box office hit.
Why are you telling us about a kid’s movie that we will never see? Because not long ago my young daughter had a bout with an illness. She is thankfully now feeling much better, but at the time that she was sick it was pretty frightening. I think it was on hour 3 of the movie that I had the realization that when my kids aren’t feeling well I’d do anything to help them feel better. For instance, I would: watch Puppy Party all night, give them all of my attention, bring them to the hospital, take off work, risk my health and spend all my money. I would do anything.
However, when my kids are feeling well and things are back to normal that is not always the case. Sometimes I’m a bit too busy to do even the little things. Sometimes I’ve got bigger and more important priorities. I don’t know about you, but it can be very easy for me to fill days with “later,” “hurry up” or “just a minute.” Now I know that you can’t be expected to treat every day like your child is sick (there’s a diagnosis for that) but I’m asking you to a little.
“More often than not, being a great parent daily is far more important than being a great parent only when kids are sick.”
The reality is that every day our children need our care and attention whether or not they have a fever or something more serious. More often than not, being a great parent daily is far more important than being a great parent only when kids are sick. I think it is easy for us to forget during our busy days filled with “stuff” that as parents we really have one major priority. That priority is to raise our kids and it is not one that is contingent on convenience or our schedules.
So how do we put this into action? Do I have to buy Puppy Party Season 1-5 or what? Here are a couple key things to think about:
- Be thankful if your children are healthy. There are many parents out there that dream of the day they might get to have a healthy child and sadly some never get to that point.
- Focus and be present in the moment. What I mean by this is that ideally you’d set some time aside each day to spend with your kids. This means that during this time you have one priority which is to interact with your kids and give them your full attention. No checking your cell phone or watching TV. Genuinely interact with your kids and give them 100%.
- Think of how it makes you feel when people around you are genuinely interested and give you their full attention. It’s the same for your kids. Deep down that’s something that is very important to all of us and thankfully something that is quite possible to achieve.
- Lastly, when it gets tough to juggle everything and you feel like you can’t do it remember that this is a short season in your life. There will be a time in the not so distant future when you will dream of spending time doing puzzles or talking with your kids rather than Skyping them at college. Trust me on this.
A very wise person once asked me if I enjoyed being a father to my two young children. It was after a particularly long night of teething; one of those nights for which there will never be enough coffee. I replied something to the effect of “It’s great but it definitely has its moments.” My friend whom has successfully raised his children to adulthood looked at me with bags under my eyes and said “Savor these moments because they are fleeting. Right now you are perfect in your kid’s eyes. They trust you completely and think the absolute world of you. That won’t last forever.” Remember that as you go about your week.
Take care and stay warm.