As parents we tend to place huge expectations on ourselves. We want to ‘get it right’, be all things to our children and pile our plate high. We say yes, to doing this, going here, making this, perfecting that, and then the yeses lose their joy. We’re investing energy we don’t have into things we feel obliged or pressured to do. We may not even want to do something but are more afraid of not doing it. We evaluate yes with caring, and no with being ‘lazy’ or uncaring. But it’s just not true. We need to drop this story we carry around no, and allow ourselves to make our plates more manageable (and palatable).
I am in a sort of limbo at present, awaiting the arrival of my second baby. I am restless, impatient even, wishing him to come, and thinking everyday - will today be it? It is so hard to stay in the present moment with such anticipation, and I know that in feeling this way I'm missing many little moments, sacrificing them for want of something bigger.
It is easy to think that any and all time spent with our children counts as together time. We are physically with them after all. However, we can be in the same space as our children and not actually be with them. Our mind could be wandering miles away, our backs turned, or be totally engaged in our own activity and totally unaware of theirs. This is reality of course, and fine, and understandable, but we have to see this time for what it is. And not mistake it for real together time, the ‘tank filling’ sort.