Parenting is short-lived.
That’s a statement that doesn’t always feel true.
I’m sitting in an Art Gallery café in Atlanta, Georgia, two days after my friend’s son was married. Married! How old am I? This is just sixteen years after my own Labour Day wedding weekend.
Apparently time moves quickly after having children.
Not so in the first year of a child’s birth. Those little ones are adorable for a reason: because they’d be too much work if they weren’t.
A. Lot. Of. Work.
Some of them super cute and serene, and Kodakifying each moment seems realistic. Some make you think the first year is one long night. Time can slow to a snail’s pace.
I’ve heard the same thing said about the time when kids enter kindergarten to high school graduation. It’s finished in a blink of an eye.
“So, invest your kids’ time, don’t just spend it,” I was reminded at the recent homeschool conference.
What do we want them to remember? What do we want them to learn?
It doesn’t have to be one long exposure to screen time. It doesn’t have to be spent at the mall. It doesn’t have to be spent reading semi-useful tidbits of info and regurgitating for standardized tests. Or it could be.
We can teach our children to live life on purpose, explore interests, find meaningful work now, expose them to everything we have access to.
“Your child is the runner. You’re helping them to find their lane,” says the speaker.
A bazillion kids out there, and we assume they all need to know the same things to become effective, functional contributors to their families, communities and society.
Maybe they aren’t cookie cutter replacements of the last grade of schoolkids. Maybe they were put on this earth to do their thing, in their own way.
So though there are days when we need to plant them in front of the television and zone out with Pinterest, a good book, or cuddle with a cappuccino, their time is short.
Let’s help them to spend their time wisely, investing their time, teaching them how to live life on purpose.