Kids don’t stay little forever. I know it. You know it. But even though it’s obvious I can’t keep my kids little forever, it doesn’t stop me from trying.
Last week I wrapped my arms around one of my 2-year-olds and held him extra close to my chest. As I rested my chin on the crown his head, I inhaled him. I took a deep breath in and tried to capture everything about that moment — including the sweet smell of my toddler — my baby.
I whispered in his ear just how much I loved him. Then, in a desperate mommy move, I asked him, “Will you please stay little forever and ever?”
“You bet!” he replied in his little high-pitched voice, clearly unaware of what he was promising.
I’ve already watched as my two older children grew bigger. As they grow up we get to experience new and exciting things, but there is still a part of my heart that aches when my toddlers aren’t toddlers anymore — even with temper-tantrums, spilt milk and crayon murals on the wall.
The truth is, I really do want them to grow up. That’s why it’s important to make sure I create special moments with my children and cherish them.
“Cherish My Children” is one of six mom resolutions at MOMentity. Here are some specific ideas of things we can do to cherish our children at any age.
- Take breaks from your children.Time away from you kids is so good for you. Maybe you already get a break from your children during the workweek. But for those stay-at-home or work-at-home moms, a few hours or even a day away can really fill your personal reserve and increase your joy for your children. When you come back, it is so wonderful to see those smiley (or even ornery) faces again. As the old saying goes, “Absence makes the heart grow fonder.”
- Tuck away electronics and play.We are raising our children in a technology age much different than our own childhood. Even as good parents, we have no idea the distance those devices may be putting between us and our children. I’m as guilty as the next.In a recent talk given by Rosemary M. Wixom to members of The Church of Latter-day Saints, Wixom pointed out, “Precious moments of opportunity to interact and converse with our children dissolve when we are occupied with distraction.” She suggested taking time each day to disconnect from electronics and give our full attention to our children, creating opportunities for conversation and play.
- Escape into the world of your child.
Just this morning my 5-year-old transformed into a baby T. rex while he was getting ready for preschool. Most mornings I’m rushing to get him ready before carpool and would normally snap him out of imagination land and bring him back to reality as we brush teeth, put on shoes and find his backpack. But today I played along and the mommy T. rex (that’s me) helped those little T. rex arms into a rain coat. We were both smiling, and he was so much more cooperative than he has been in months. I really need to escape into the world of my children more often rather than try to pull them into my adult world.
- Be silly.
Have a dance party, tell a knock-knock joke, make a silly face. Just be silly! Give your kids the chance to get to know the “fun” you. Moments of you rocking out in the kitchen, singing into a spatula or doing cartwheels in the yard are the memories you really want your kids to have. They’ll be getting their groove on or belly laughing from your hilarious story — and those are the memories you want to have of them.
This article was originally published in Motherhood Matters on KSL.com
The stock image used is from freedigitalphotos.net.