Parenting - How I Know
I’m Getting Some Things
Random Dailies are snippets of thought and observation from the past couple or few days. There are so many more. Perhaps we’ll get to those. For now, here are some.
In my last Random Daily post, I mentioned that I learn so much from my children and shared a couple of observations of my seven year old. Today, my thoughts continue along that theme …
It’s Spring Break (for us) and I wanted to break into song yesterday. Today, too, again. Not because it’s Spring Break, but because of how my little guy is wanting to spend his time.
I am aware that a lot of kids want to sit in front of the tube for long periods of time, play video games, or immerse themselves in offerings from the latest handheld, digital devices.
Now, don’t get me wrong. Our family certainly loves a myriad of what our digital culture throws at us. We enjoy video games, movies, and can be found mindlessly scrolling through feeds on our smartphones at times (ugh!). But …
It’s not central to our existence.
We schedule our time for media consumption, for the most part. We don’t overload on anything, and have no problem shutting it off if we feel it’s getting to be too much. Mostly, though, we purposefully engage (and schedule) so much more around us that it’s nearly impossible to be trapped by anything.
Back to Spring Break …
Spring Break begins, and my already joy-filled, excited-that-it’s-Spring-because-Sun-and-because-everything-is-turning-green-again younger son jumps and dances and cheers with unhindered excitement that he has some days ahead of him without school and schedules and such.
The thing that makes ME want to burst forth into song and dance is what he wants to do with his Spring Break.
Here’s an abbreviated snippet of his requests from the past two days so far:
- Yesterday he simply wanted to play outside for as long as he possibly could. Started after breakfast and continued on into late afternoon. He only wanted to come in for a brief amount of time, in order to play a game with his older brother (I’ve never seen two brothers/friends as close as these two).
- Bird, and bug, watching (What can I say? The kid loves earthworms, ladybugs, and Praying Mantises).
Wanted to help Mommy with some pruning and seed-planting for our gardens.
- Play. Just. Want. To. Play! (And by play, here, I mean imagination-based, nothing digital, indoor or outdoor, it doesn’t matter, as long as I get to play – play.)
- This morning, he requested to listen to the Chess (Broadway) soundtrack (he loves movie scores, Broadway musicals, and video game soundtracks).
- After that, he asked me if we could read some poetry together. (At this point, I was pretty much launching into the hyperspeed equivalent of parenting joy!) So, we read Shel Silverstein for a bit (his favorite poet, and a favorite in our home).
- Poetry, people … REQUESTS FOR POETRY!
- He has requested to do some ceramics, drawing, and other creative things this week as well.
But what is most exciting for me is:
- That he regularly, randomly, runs up to give me hugs, kisses, and just talk to me about what’s on his mind. My boys just want to talk with me — to share what’s on their minds and hearts. Is there a greater privilege?
These snippets remind me throughout my day that, at some point and on many levels, my wife and I are getting the parenting thing right!
Watching my older son, and seeing his integrity, strength of character, creativity, compassion, love for his family … and so much more … gives me tremendous confidence in my pursuit to be the best Dad I can be. Seeing him, and now his younger brother coming up behind him, reminds me that Holly and I have the supreme privilege of being parents to these two awesome young men.
There’s so much more that goes into effective parenting and raising responsible, productive, and fun-loving kids, but how my seven year old wants to spend his Spring Break gives me hope that maybe, just … maybe, we’re getting this parenting thing right!
Until next time, BE … remarkable!