Monday, May 3, 2010
On Friday Steve and I had the opportunity to spend some alone time with #3, Joshua. I don't remember the last time it was just the three of us all hanging out. In fact, it may be that we haven't done so since he was a little baby. I didn't really think much of it at all. My parents simply wanted to take the older two out in the afternoon until bedtime and we needed to run some errands. So off we went.
Getting into the car felt like such a breeze. Three snaps and we hit the road. I felt lighter, focused and cheerful. Once our few errands were done, we decided to hit the mall play area and just let Josh play for awhile. I thought he'd be bored without his brothers. I thought he wouldn't know what to do with himself. But I was wrong.
This little monkey just glowed. He didn't stop smiling. For the first time in his life that he could remember, he had both of his parents focused just on him, smiling at him, encouraging him to climb higher and just enjoying him. He ate it up. After some playtime, we went to go get a cookie (totally spoiled his dinner later but who cares?!) and we let him throw some pennies into the water fountain.
Meanwhile, Steve and I felt like we were on a mini-date. Not much talking (from Joshua that is)...the quiet was delightful. We LOVE the banter of our boys but, a bit of quiet is welcome at times and can be quite refreshing.
All in all it was a simple afternoon but I learned a very important lesson. My little one-and-a half year old needs just as much one-on-one time as my older children do. I didn't think he'd notice that it was just him but he did. And he relished in it. This realization totally caught me off guard and reminded me that I can really miss some big things when it comes to parenting. I hate blind spots but am so glad that God gives us little glimpses of ours every once in awhile. It's God's grace to us. These little glimpses can open our eyes to things that we wouldn't have seen, thought of or cared about before. As humbling as they can be, I'm so so thankful for them.
I can't always get the alone time I think I might need which each child. But whatever I can get, I must snatch up and cherish. And when it comes down to it, I need to make it more of a priority. Joshua gets a lot of attention but not tons with me just focused on him. Precious little him. Just because he came third doesn't mean he doesn't need me and his Daddy just as much.
So I'm thankful for our little date. And I am thankful for the reminder. And I look forward to another time when it can be just us three again. In the meantime, I'm going to do my best to try and work some alone time in with each of my children on a more regular basis. Especially the younger two since Isaac gets a lot of alone time with me when his brothers nap. It may not be practical everyday but I can do it more regularly. If I can make it work for Isaac, I can do it with the other two. I just need to think it's important enough.