Time with children

We had a gathering over the weekend where old friends joined together. Interestingly, we know each other for more than a decade now since when majority of us were still single. Whilst some of us still remain single, majority of them found partners, then become parents.

So we have a group of children going through the schools relatively together. The interesting part of this is that I can recognise different parenting styles in each of them. Some of them are selectively listening to their children, others are not participating in parenting.

As children reach that age that they can grasp meanings of boundaries, I found myself started to use excuses like “I am sorry. I am busy at moment” or “I really want to play with you but it is bed time” or “I am so tired. I can’t do that with you” etc. When they refuse to understand or testing my boundaries, I don’t know what to do.

To be in your children’s memories tomorrow, you have to be in their lives today.

Barbara Johnson

When I’ve encountered this quote, I have realised that time with children is so precious. They grow everyday, progress everyday, change everyday. Although I don’t want to miss a moment in their life, part of me take it for granted that I am able to spend time with them at moment.

So “how would I want to be in their memories?” I would like them to remember fun time we had together. I was there for them when they needed. I want to be a place for them when they have no where else to go. Then, how can I become that? Am I spending such time with them? am I putting myself before them? is that reasonable or is that just my excuse?

My sister-in-law had modelled well to me how to give children attention when they needed. She said “you don’t want to miss an opportunity to celebrate with them. Once you’ve missed, you might not able to get second chance.”

In many cases, five minutes or three minutes of interaction is enough to change a life. If I have time to read a book, search on web, or watching a movie, I can’t see why I can’t spend five minutes with children.

How would you like children to remember you?

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