It’s that time of the week again. Time to team up with my tribe as we write together for five minutes (just five minutes) and hit “publish” without over editing or over thinking. If you want to play along, you can find all the details here. And now, let’s write!
“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activitiy under heaven.” Ecc. 3:1
She tries to hold my hand, and I tell her she doesn’t have to. Yes, we’re in an amusement park with thousands of other people and yes, she’s a bit on the small side, but it’s hot outside, really hot. Both our hands are sweaty and gross, and sometimes Moms are just all touched out. So I let go of her hand and we keep walking toward the next big roller coaster.
But 30 seconds later her hand is reaching for mine again, and I tell her it’s OK, you don’t have to hold my hand. You’re a big girl now and I know you won’t get lost. Her hand drops and then it’s back again a few seconds later. Finally my “big” 10 year old girl says, “But I want to hold your hand. I like being close to you.”
When my kids were babies I was constantly reading up on the next stage of their lives. Part of it was curiosity, part of it was wanting to know what to expect, and if I’m honest, part of it was anticipation. I wanted to get on to the next thing. Learning to sit up? Check. What’s next? Maybe I can give her a head start. (and the Mama competition thing deserves a post of its very own)
But in my eagerness to move things along, I didn’t always fully appreciate the season they were in, and I didn’t always give them time to finish one stage before hurrying into a new one.
Lots of people write about enjoying your children where they are and slowing down to smell the roses, and those are easy words to write but they can be hard words to live out. In a world that seems to be stuck on fast forward, where precociousness and speed are applauded, it goes against the flow to encourage your 10-year-old girls to play with dolls or watch Sofia the First (mine also likes Max and Ruby) or wear modest age-appropriate clothing. Or maybe even hold your hand in public.
I don’t want this stage to end, and I especially don’t want it to end prematurely just because I’m in a hurry. I hope she continues to want to hold my hand in public, even when it’s not comfortable for me because of the heat or whatever. It’s worth the discomfort to know that she wants to be close to me.