A conversation with my daughter two nights ago is causing me to take a pause and come back into focus. It went a little something like this:
Mom, let’s make play dough. We make play dough at school. We should make some.
I’m so glad you get to have play dough at school. Right now, it’s harder for us to do that kind of stuff so I’m glad you get to have fun with it at school.
(As I sat on my bed folding piles of laundry she looked at me, paused, and then started to walk out of the room. Then she stopped. She looked up at me with tears in her eyes.)
Mom…why…you…you never play with me anymore.
After some big tears on my part and admission that what she was saying is true we came up with some ideas for how to spend more time together. We’ve since had a challenging game of hide-and-seek, put on a few puppet shows, and spent more time reading together. These are all small things that make a huge impact in not just her life, but mine. I am more full when I take the time time enjoy my children. The piles of papers are still on my desk and boxes sit in the living room.
I think when any parent hears words such as these it causes them to take a pause and think about what’s important. My daughter’s genuine heartfelt feelings stopped me in my tracks and I’m thankful for it. It’s been three months since we started moving and this move didn’t seem much out of the ordinary compared to any other person out there. But it’s been hard. Very hard.
For now I’m taking a pause to say yes to my family and practicing the art of saying no to others. No to lunch out on Saturday, no to volunteering at the kids’ school, no to making a meal for the new mom who just had a baby. Normally, I love giving of myself to others but, right now, my family wins.