Where does the time go? I wonder about this – a lot. And even more so as I watch our four children growing before my eyes.
Some ordinary moments stop you in-your-tracks. It’s when our 3-year old says something that makes me realise he actually has been listening to the words I say. And then I think – have I told him the things he really needs to hear?
Or our miss 9. I look at her and wake up to the fact that she’s not a little girl anymore. And I am staring into the confronting reality that the amount of time for me to encourage, and shape her as she grows in confidence, responsibility and interdependence is fading fast.
Just the other day, it was this miss 9 that reminded me that the simplest of actions, playing chasings (tiggy) in the backyard, had made her day. Simply spending time with her. My time was her gift. And time with her was gifted back to me.
Time stopped ‘going’ and I was present in that moment with her.
We have this tradition where we take our children on a hike the year they turn 6. And not just any hike – it’s a challenging 4 day adventure that covers about 50 kms. Can a 6-year old do that? Of course they can, but it requires us, the parent, to go at their pace. To slow down, to see things from their perspective, to notice what they notice. To pick flowers and skim stones. To rub their sore feet at night and best of all to tell them how proud we are that they didn’t give up when it got tough and they were tired.
And on this adventure, every night when we set up camp (and they run around with all that extra energy!) we share uninterrupted time together – sharing our dreams and thoughts – just us, without distraction.
It is precious time. A time for them to show us that they can do it, and a time for us to realise that they can. A time we will never, ever forget.
So put down your phone, the ipad, your kindle, the remote. Go outside. Go for a walk. It doesn’t have to be far, but it does have to be together. Now is the time.
Hire camping gear and lightweight hiking equipment from Support Crew Brisbane. Or join us on one of our outdoor family camping adventures.