STOP! Look, and Listen

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Posted by vera | Posted in Parenting | Posted on 20-11-2009

twin AThis past week, I had the opportunity to attend a provincial training session for educators where I heard Avis Glaze, and outstanding educator and leadership guru speak.

What she said struck a chord with me not only in relation to my life as a teacher, but also as a mother of multiples.  Ms. Glaze spoke of the importance of putting people first, of stopping what one is doing when a person comes into the room, and of attending to that person in a warm and authentic manner.

I was quite shaken as I realized how very often I am engrossed in my computer, for example, working on this blog (hehe), when one of my twin boys comes to me asking for help with something, or with an invitation to play together, or just to show me some great masterpiece he has completed..  How often do I absentmindedly mumble some half-sincere response to appease him and buy myself a few more minutes of screen-sucking time?!  More importantly, how soon will he learn, if this pattern continues, to stop coming to mommy?!!  And then how likely it is that I will become one of those parents who scratches her head in bewilderment that she has no relationship with her teenagers, lol!

Let it be resolved that from this point forward, people take priority over computers, sticky notes, lesson plans, daybooks and any other non-human busy-work!  From this day on, I solemnly swear to STOP, look and listen everytime someone – be it one of my children, my spouse or a colleague – “interrupts” what I am doing!

It is not enough to resolve this. it is important to build a practical plan that will allow for the “me” time I need to satisfy at least some of my addictive screen-sucking habit.  I now close the door in my classroom at lunchtime for 20 minutes (with a timer), or book one of my twin boys into an hour-long class that I can drop him off for and head to the nearest Starbucks to spend some focused time with my addiction.  Then, I close up the laptop and pick him up, a smile on my face, my mind completely focused on my child.  What a pleasure!

Comments (1)

As a stay at home mom this topic really hit home. My ‘darlings’ are only at school for 2 1/2 hours and there are never enough hours in the day to catch up with household chores and day to day challenges of keeping my boys occupied while trying to carve out a little me time. My answer, I steal lots of ‘me’ minutes here and there throughout the day while the crew is occupied and I stop whatever chore I’m doing about 1/2 hour before school pick up time so I’m not stressed and running to get them. The truth is I’ve learned to live with dust bunnies, unmade beds and stacked paperwork. I want my children to continue to be excited to show me how proud they are of their latest accomplishments. I don’t ever want to lose those precious moments – you can never get them back.

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