Confluence Chronicles – Where City & County Meet 4-5-10
As our children grow up, we teach them safety, manners, life skills and so much more. Remember the excitement of watching them develop? First smile, first word, first step – all of these are generally reflective of parental involvement. Parents and grandparents are enthralled with the progress each child makes. We act as though no other kid in the world has accomplished these magnificent milestones. That is just part of what makes being a parent or a grandparent so interesting. Every day is different. Just when you think you have the child’s habits figured out, another boost of development occurs and things change.
Take eating habits, for instance. When our kids were young, another mom and I compared notes and realized we had some concern that none of our brood seemed to eat enough to keep a bird alive. One of us inquired of a pediatrician how much food a toddler really needs. His response was that the nutrition in two peas per day is enough and that they will eat when they need to.
We soon learned to get ready for a major clothes shopping trip when each youngster suddenly started eating a lot. Of course! Their food needs were a direct correlation to their growth spurts, and that didn’t stop with toddlerhood. Our older son grew 8 inches during one year of high school. Now that was a challenge, working to keep enough food in front of him and trying to keep him in Wranglers that didn’t turn into “high-water” pants seemingly overnight.
Our sons are now adults with children of their own and I am learning from them. One son is Mr. Mom as his wife is in medical school. They live in Aurora, Colo., and are not city people, but he makes the most of it. He enrolled his girls, ages 5 and 2, in swimming, gymnastics and dance lessons on alternate mornings. The classes are as much for fun and activity as learning how to work with others. In the afternoon the older girl has kindergarten for 2-1/2 hours, the younger one naps, and dad works on his master’s degree online from CSU.
None of this is extraordinary unless you have a chance to observe as I have. He pays attention to his girls. He doesn’t try to read or watch T.V. and when he talks with them he is fully attentive and in the moment, as they say. How admirable!
It made me think about my own habits and perhaps it will do the same for you. How often do we give full attention to our conversations? We commonly talk on the phone and work on the computer at the same time, and neither task is done wholeheartedly.
There is one time when I cannot multi-task and that is when I write. That concentration can be a detriment and cause more work; I just burned the lunch I was preparing and will have to start over.
Peggy can be reached via e-mail at Peggy@PeggySanders.com.
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