It goes without saying that most parents understand the importance of spending time with their children. The challenge is that just “being around” isn’t quite enough. There is an important difference between being physically present and being emotionally present.
I think where most parents struggle in today’s world, when there is little, if any, village of support, and virtually no breaks, is in being present during the time we spend with our children. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
This is definitely my biggest struggle – making sure that in the time I am spending with them, I am listening, I am emotionally available enough to come alongside their feelings when they are struggling or frustrated or sad, and I am available to them on a level that goes far deeper than just ‘watching’ them to actually being with them when they need it. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
But our children need this. The key to their growth, the key to their eventual independence, is the ability to depend on us, to rest in our care, and to feel a deep love from – and connection with – their primary caregiver. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
So if you find yourself just going through the motions – stop and take a break. Ask your partner to take over for long enough that you can get a breath of fresh air, do some meditation, or whatever you need in order to feel as though you’ve filled your cup a bit so that you are better able to give your children part of yourself in a way that allows you to be present, instead of just being around 💕⠀⠀