Have you often wondered:
“How do you get opportunities to spend more time with your children?
I know I have. After all, I am going to miss a lot in my children’s lives.
This is something that I know and accept. But, I want to take a more radical approach and push back the ‘missing out’ as long as possible.
What I will miss (and what I won’t)
I know I will miss out on their first kiss, the first I love you, the first heartbreak, their first dance, the first sleepover, the first day of college class.
But, there is so much growing up in between now and then that I don’t want to miss out on. In fact, I chose to be a stay at home mom so I didn’t have to miss out on the baby years.
They’re only young for such a short time. But, not missing the “now” moments means living differently then everyone else.
It means spending more time with your children than you would normally get. And that’s a big deal in my world.
How being a SAHM and homeschooling makes things different
Over the last few weeks, I have been a struggling with my decisions on education. All the other three-year-olds got their first backpacks, held their signs in front of beautiful new buildings and were taking their first big steps out into the world on their own.
I am choosing to keep my son home and begin homeschooling. I feel like a fish swimming against the tide and this has brought up lots of moments of self doubt and loneliness.
I’m getting more time with my children than other parents
But this past Tuesday was a changing point for me.
It was when I realized that I am a time thief. I am stealing more time with my son then most parents get and thereby witnessing more firsts.
Last Tuesday, I got to watch the first time my son fully participated like a big boy in story time. Boy, did that do me a world of good.
It felt like a washing of cool water that refreshed my motherhood for the months and hopefully years to come.
So whats the big deal?
See, for the last 2 1/2 years every week, we have dutifully gone to story time and have sat in the back of the room with me singing the songs and stomping my feet and my son curled up next to me – nervous.
I never force him to participate, but have definitely encouraged.
Over the last year, I have often wondered if and when he would ever participate in a story time.
Today, like every other week we marched into the classroom. Yet, this time, my son grabbed his little seat and went and sat in a circle all by himself. He participated in every song. Stomped his feet, clapped his hands, and spun around and he laughed and giggled.
The joy I felt watching him actively enter into independence brought tears to my eyes.
These moments sustain me as a SAHM
I know I’m going to miss so many moments in his life.
And someday, I will be his old mom who he calls to check on, or sits and listens to her crazy stories of his childhood. Someday, he will have his own family and I will be the extended family. Part of his life, but not his whole world.
So, today, I am so glad I choose not to miss these moments. I am glad I am stealing a little more time with him. I am glad I get to watch nearby just a little longer than most.
As for you, Mamma …
So, what does this mean to you and spending time with your children?
This is written for the Mammas who are the fish swimming against the tide. If you hear you are doing it all wrong, if everyone tells you to back off, but in your heart, the advice you are receiving feels wrong. Then keep going.
You will get your moment of seeing why you are doing it differently.
I can’t tell you whether you are right or wrong. But I can tell you, your heart, when filled with love for your child will know.
I can also tell you, it is okay to be different and spend more time with your children. There is so much wrong with how we are told to raise our kids, that being different may be exactly what is right.