These are our Children. If you ask them to name every single gift they received in their lifetime I am almost certain they could not tell you, well maybe the oldest one could he has an elephant brain. However if you asked them about how much time we spent with them the answer would be a tremendous amount of time. Hubby and I attended football games, cheer competitions, award ceremonies, spelling bees, school plays, so on and so forth. We did our absolute best to not miss anything. Everyday with the exception of weekends we drove them to and from school, Hubby made their breakfast in the mornings and I had their supper (yes I said supper lol) ready for them when they arrived home. We sat down daily at the dinner table and engaged in conversation. We had indoor picnics, dinner parties and movies nights. We went to the park, the movies, the beach, hiking, bike riding, skating, Chuck E. Cheese, took road trips and also visited family a lot. I am saying all of this to say we spent lots and lots of time together and we still do.
Now I come from a place of knowing this may feel impossible for a lot of parents who work in corporate America. My husband and I have both worked from home over the last 21 years. Being an entrepreneur does not mean you have more time especially when you truly work your business therefore we scheduled the time. Working parents can commit if you see your children as being valuable. They need more than gifts on Birthdays and Christmas, or money for report cards. You do not have to attend every single game or award ceremony but you can attend a few. if you can make time to hang out with the homies or your girlfriends you can definitely make some time to hang out and create dates with your children.
I have seen the damage and pain that children suffer when parents work so hard to maintain relationships at work, with family, with friends, and partners but always put them on the back burner. They feel invisible, forgotten, and unwanted. They grow up and either struggle with overcompensation or not doing enough. Take some time and think about how can you change the family dynamic and incorporate more opportunities to create positive experiences and memories. Think of it with this perspective would you rather spend time now raising healthy children who are socially, emotionally, physically, and spiritually full with the morals and values you taught them? Or would you prefer to dis-regard them and allow your children to become totally disconnected, unaware, struggling with uncertainty looking for acceptance in all the wrong places?
I am not asking you to quit your lifestyle I am asking you to give your children the best gift ever your Presence instead of Presents. Invest in them like you would invest in stocks, real estate, cars, jewelry, time-shares. Here are a few friendly suggestions. If you have smaller children read them a bedtime story at least 3 times a week, teach them to count, blow some bubbles or take them to the park and put them on your lap and just swing. If you have older children go outside and throw the ball, sit and watch television with them, draw, color, paint, teach them to tie their shoe, play a board game, go to the park or in the backyard and have a picnic. If you have teenagers find out what they enjoy and just enjoy it with them and always engage in conversation. Children need your attention in every stage of their life.
The key is balance. I understand that a lot of you may have trouble communicating with your teenagers but understand you cannot give up. "The teenage stage", is where parents have to be patient and persistent. When you begin the journey when they are infants and remain consistent the process is easier. I believe it is never to late to incorporate healthy habits. Also remember not to be overbearing children need space to grow. I am petitioning you to spend quality time, create lifelong positive memories and experiences if you are not doing so already with your Diamonds in the ruff. Be an Intentional parent in every aspect of your tiny human’s lives. Always keep in mind that TIME is the most Valuable thing you can spend on a Child. Save the children.
From my heart to yours...