Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Kids, Conversation, and Onions

If your children are home with you all day, their little chatter is incessant (especially at the toddler stage). "Mom, what do flowers look like inside? Mom, do bones bend? Mom, someday, when I'm flying my plane, I'm going to...." and on and on it goes. Don't get me wrong. I love (usually) :) their questions and statements.

But the other day I realized even though we're talking all day, our communication is like an onion. You can stay on the outer peel all day long. As we go about the business of mothering and running a home, we issue commands and reprimands, read stories, answer questions, even read Bible stories, provide training, schooling and more--and still we may not have gotten past that outer layer. Of course we know our children, and know them innately well, but how many times a day do we peel back the layers and get to the core?

Doing that requires time. Not much necessarily, but some focused time, where we stop all other activities for a few moments and truly give our children some one-on-one attention. During this time of peeling back the onion layers, sit and really interact with your child individually. It can take awhile for them to express their thoughts or tell you an "important" story, and it's tempting to mentally check-out as the story rambles on, but do your very best to focus. Even if it's just five minutes, to your child it will feel like the world stood still while they spent time with you. While they won't consciously express it, they'll know you took time with them to peel the onion to its core. And that will make such a difference in your lives.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for writing this. I needed a reminder to take time to really listen and spend time with each of my children.