I want to read your words before they are kept under lock and key—for your eyes only.
I want to watch you do what you love before I am no longer your favorite audience.
I want to admire your choice in color combinations and accessories before my opinion on fashion is politely ignored.
I want to listen to your nighttime secrets before the bedroom door shuts, and I’m standing outside listening to your favorite song drift out from beneath the crack.
I want to look into your eyes and ask, “What’s on your mind?” before I am no longer privy to your hopes, dreams, worries and fears.
I want to say yes before your invitations are reserved for people your own age.
I just want to know you, really know you, as you grow.
With each passing year, the map of my child’s life expands to reveal a new section of uncharted territory. And although it might be tempting to retreat to separate paths, separate rooms, and separate screens—I must stay the course. This means I must accept the rare and important invitations that may sound like this:
“Hey, Mom, check this out.”
“I want to show you something, Mom.”
I must hear things that are not going to be easy to hear. I must answer questions that are not easy to answer.I must love a child that may not always be easy to love.
But if I make a conscious effort to accept her invitations now, perhaps I will still receive them as she grows; I can only try.
Whether I am in familiar or unfamiliar territory with her, one thing remains constant: she is my child, and I will love her as much as humanly possible in the time that I am given.
And on the days I feel like I’m staring at a stranger, I will try more than ever to be ALL THERE—because in the midst of our busy, media-saturated, over-scheduled lives, taking time to really know someone is the ultimate act of love.
© Rachel Macy Stafford 2013
Each day I hear from people whose occupations, family situations, and life stressors cause them to wonder if they are home enough … if they provide enough … if they ARE enough. And what I believe with my whole heart is that it is not about how much time you have with your loved ones—it’s about choosing to be ALL THERE in the time that you do have. Because in those moments of looking in their eyes and listening to their words, you begin to know them as people. So today, let us make the most of the time that we do have. We can learn a lot about a person with just a few minutes of undivided attention. Thanks for being part of The Hands Free Revolution!
*For more ‘Letting Go to Live’ inspiration, read HANDS FREE MAMA the book, a New York Times Bestseller.