New to Bounty?
It’s tears mixed with laughing while negotiating about why shoes need to match.
It’s beds with too many tenants that leave pee stains on sheets and give kicks to the face.
It’s requests to watch Elmo and Frozen everyday. All day. Over and over again. Then again.
It’s spilled milk and crunched cereal. All over your car. And couch. And crevices of your purse?!
It’s everything you love. Mixed with every kind of stress. All day then all night. No breaks in sight.
It consumes your mind. It fills your heart. It exhausts your body. It grows you like you never imagined.
The one time in our lives where we have kids in the home. Littlies (and not so littlies) that need us. That love us. That we LOVE from head-to-toe while simultaneously draining us from head-to-toe.
The older generation tells us with love:
“Don’t blink or you’ll miss it. It passes before you know it. Savor it now. It’s your one chance.”
And we politely while somewhat annoyed respond:
“Yes, I know. I know. I hear that a lot.
And I want to. I really do. That’s why I had kids. To enjoy them.
But the days, they just fly by. And before I know it, they are another day older. Meanwhile I still haven’t brushed my teeth. Or hair.
So savouring them. Well, it’s harder than you know.”
Can you relate?
Here’s 10 easy ways you can blink today and feel like you didn’t miss out on your child today.
1. Draw an outline of your hand.
Then lay their hand inside the outline of your hand and trace their hand. Have them look at the differences in the sizes of your hands and remind them that their hand will one day grow as large as yours. But for now it’s small. And that means they’re still growing and you like that. Then ask them to go on a walk with you. And hold their hand. And don’t let go until they do.
2. Have a staring contest with them.
Tell them you have to keep a straight face with absolutely no laughing. Then flare your nostrils at them. Cross your eyes. Make your craziest face until they can’t contain themselves anymore. Then take them in the bathroom and have them practice making silly faces with you.
3. Turn on some music and ask them to teach you some dance moves.
Act as if they are the expert then no matter what they do, mimic them. Tell them you like their moves. Then when they are tired. Turn on some crazy annoying song. And teach them to do it. Dare I say, Macerena??
4. Interview them.
And get your camera rolling. Sit them down in a chair. And ask them about the world. Ask them what a president does. Ask them how people float in outer space. If they’re older. Ask them what sounds like the most fun place to take a trip. The worst? Ask them as many questions as you can think of about THEM.
5. Have them pick out your outfit.
The entire thing. Then let them pick out their outfit. A costume. Mismatched shoes. Anything. Then take them out on a date. At a restaurant. When people ask you about your outfit say, “My daughter dressed me today. I’m thinking she’s the next Vera Wang?!” Make them feel proud.
6. Tell each other I love you in animal language.
Ask them how a cow would say I love you. Then a pig. Then a goat. Then a snake. Pull them close. And do the same back to them. “Hey, I’m going to say I love you in dog right now. Are you ready?” Woof, Woof Woooooooooofffffff!!”
7. Say yes to something you always say no to.
They always want to fly a kite but you don’t want to. They always want to go to Chuck E. Cheese but the germs gross you out. They always want to..what?! Just for today. Say yes.
8. Sit them down and tell them everything you love about them.
Affirm them. Then do it some more. Anything they are good at. Bring it up. Make them blush. Make their heart feel good. They won’t always care about your opinions. But they do NOW.
9. Do something old-school with them.
And teach them about something that has changed. Pull up a picture of VCR or a cassette tape. Teach them how things “used” to be in the “olden” days. While they’re getting a little history lesson, you’re also getting a reminder into how short they’ve been on this earth. And how crazy it that they only know what a cell phone is.
10. For one whole day, hide your phone.
You don’t have to do anything special other than respond when they ask for you without a distraction. Just for one day. Make that day a day that they see that they come first. That you get it. That they’re WITH you. But they won’t always be. And that why they still are…you’re WITH them. Then hug them before you respond to their request.
Written by Quin Kelly; wife, mother, blogger and licensed marriage and family therapist. 99% of her time is spent keeping her 3 boys alive and the other 1% is spent writing about their crazy times in her blog Sanctification and Spitup, which is also found on Facebook.