What a wonderful thing to do: Reconnect. With your spouse, friends and don’t forget your children. We need to be connected to our kids. It’s one of the biggest chunks of our job as parents.
It seems that so many are out of ‘connect’ these days. I’m a very busy gal, but I’m still a mom and I try to be a connected mom. I’m home when the kids are home. I get to know their friends, their friends know me. I am very involved when they are playing on-line games making sure the internet rules are being followed, the game is appropriate and they are also having fun. I know the parents of my kids friends. I feel pretty connected and yet, I don’t. There are times that I am not feeling so connected.
I have felt completely and utterly disconnected. It’s a place that teeters on the feeling of -eep do I say it? outloud?-parental failure…is that too strong? Maybe. despair? Still too strong? Ok…loss. It feels like loss. I don’t want to lose my kids. I want them to grow up and move out. I want them to live their own lives where I am not a part of each moment of their day, but I want to be connected.
I have seen some families really out of connect, for different reasons. Call me a goober, but I believe you can not stay un-connected for too long. That is a dangerous place to be and you should not dwell there. It is your job as a parent to stay as connected as much as they let you, and then connect just a bit more. When you’re not there or even if you are there, but not ‘present’ because ‘busy’ is your name, it’s a very sad thing to see. I can only imagine what it must feel like to live there. *shudder* Your children need you, they want you, they wish they were connected with you.
Let’s stay connected, or, if need be, lets re-connect. It’s not all that hard. You just simply need to try. Then try again, and again until it works. Never give up-every parents motto. Many ways to re-connect, big or small. Here is a big way: Generations of Virtue is hosting a FAMILY retreat to, you guessed it, ReConnect!
Doesn’t that look like fun!?! Yes I agree, it really does! What a way to kick off a ReConnection!
Unfortunately, we will not be going. Lets face it, things are tight right now and flying the whole family to Colorado is just not in the budget. But that’s ok, there are other ways to reconnect! If you are in the same boat as I and are looking for that way back to shore. Lets try one (or more) of these:
Hot Cocoa Date:
Make a two cups of Cocoa with whip cream and sprinkles to add a special touch. Sit down and just have a chat. Keep it light, keep it easy. Just be honest. Say something like-‘I feel like I’m a bit out of touch and I just wanted to catch up with you’. Remember to be real, it only works if you are real with yourself and your child. Ask questions to get the talk flowing: What is your favorite color? What do you want to be when you grow up?, works with younger kids. For older: What are you learning the most about? Which school subject is surprising you? What is your favorite color? (I think that one works at all ages, its easy, innocent and good to know info). The goal is to start off with some simple ‘ice-breaker’ questions and let the conversation flow. Your job is to ask then listen. Really listen. Hear what your child is telling you. No cell phone, no laptop. Just you, the child, a conversation and two cups of cocoa.
Uno or Swap!:
Play a card game together. conversation will flow throughout the game and it gives you something else to focus on. Hopefully, overcoming any awkwardness.
Nothing like a game of bowling to loosen everyone up and have some fun! We don’t go often enough as a family and every time we do go, we always say, we should do this more often.
Spa Day-for the girls:
Go get a mani or pedi or both. Just you and your girl. Daddies-don’t shy away from this one, mani’s are for Daddy’s too! This is prime time to have some fun and get to know a little bit more about the princess you are raising. She is that special and so definitely worth it.
Bucket O Balls for the boys:
Head to your local driving range and buy a bucket of balls to just hit. While your child laughs their head off at your
lame-ness inability to hit a ball to the first flag, barriers will melt and open lines will form. Moms do not shy away from this, it is more fun than you think it will be. I know, I’ve done it. Inability to reach that first flag 50 yards out? Yup, that’s me. But it was worth every minute! Maybe you’re the dad and you can reach the farthest flag- that works too. Teach your child to reach the same goal. Having common goals is a great ground to reconnect on!
Oh the importance of showing your child that they are so important to you that you are going to spend an entire night on them and on them alone! Nothing can speak such volumes. If you can give your time wholly, completely and entirely for one night you will have built a bridge stronger than steel. Don’t need a ton of money, you just need your time and your full presence.