Rushing through the countless tasks that await you first thing in the morning, hoping to get a break long enough to read a book or color a picture with your little one(s) is often how I start my day. I want to be there for them, as do pretty much all moms. I have always had visions of myself being that mom that got IN the sand box and not watched from the side park bench while paying bills online. But there was always so much to do that even when I broke away for a while, I found my mind still racing through the many things I didn’t get to. While here in front of me were my wee ones, looking to be with me, the present, undistracted me, just because. When you multitask your entire day and you find yourself in a moment free of duties, that part of the brain is hard to turn off. Hard yes, but not impossible. The truth is, with a few learned tips you can shut that part down and live freely in the moment given to you.
In the film Avatar there is a phrase worth not just remembering but adopting. It is a little phrase, yet a mighty one. “I see you.” Not the kind of seeing that you have when you spot your child across the park or when you catch her pulling a fellow sand box goer’s hair. Ekkkk! Not even the seeing when you notice your child’s favorite activity or change in friends. But rather seeing, like I see what makes you YOU, and in this moment I am taking that in for all of its glory and worth. Yeah, deep I know, but oh so powerful when practiced! Our children are vessels of life, filled with thoughts, emotions and powerful insights. To be there in the moment with them you have to see them where they are. So here are a few things that might just do the trick to get you both there.
1.) Carve out some one on one time. I know it can be hard when you have more then one child in a family, but it has a greater impact if done this way. Just 15-20 minutes to start is enough.
2.) Pick an activity… a game, coloring, anything that is engaging in some way.
3.) For a moment try and see the whole situation. See her actions and try to imagine her thoughts and processing. I like to call this “discovering her”. It is just really paying close attention to what makes her say and do what she does.
4.) Make eye contact as much as you can. Show her she has your complete and undivided attention. This does wonders to increase bonding and connection.
5.) Then just allow yourselves to enjoy the time. Respond to her actions, ask questions, shower her with praise and affection and see her confidence rise.
You will be blown away with how fully you feel like you have just shared in something that is lasting and real. It sounds so simple and maybe it is, but honestly it can be benchmarks in both of your lives that later ends up as times you look back on and relive over and over again. Now, you will fall in and out of it, which is perfectly normal. But once you know how to get there, you will know how to get back. It is a life-changing thing that will so enrich you, your children, and your journey together, that you will not be the same again. Living in the moment will be all you desire.
Now go and enjoy those moments!! :)