When they slept through the night I couldn't wait until they could sit up alone.
When they sat up alone I couldn't wait until they could feed themselves.
When they fed themselves I couldn't wait until they were potty trained.
When they were potty trained I couldn't wait until they entered kindergarten.
When they entered kindergarten I couldn't wait until we were done with car seats and booster seats.
When the car seats were gone I started thinking, "Wait a minute! They are growing up way too fast!"
I am absolutely loving the stage between the car seats and the teen years. It is fun, it is innocent, it's "what mom and dad want to watch is still cool" and it is coming to an end way too fast.
On Christmas day my son turned thirteen. Not only did my household gain a teenager, it also gained two iPods (my 11 year old, soon to be 12, got one too). That means that four out of the six Krumpe ears listen less to mommy and daddy.
It is not so easy to call them to dinner anymore. I have to go find them. Requests to take out the garbage or make beds often go unheard. Now they actually have excuses to the undone chores because they REALLY didn't hear me.
So I have come up with a battle plan: BE (MORE) INTENTIONAL.
To me this looks like more eye contact. It's more conversations in the home and in the car that keep us engaged in relationship. It is entering in and with one ear bud in letting them share the latest TobyMac or Jamie Grace song.
I've tried to be an intentional mom over the years, but the outward pull from electronic devices and friend relationships were not plugged into the family equation until my kids had devices that plugged in. Now I have to make sure they have ears to hear. . . . me.
Yesterday I went shopping with my son. In the car I looked over at him and thought, "If I say something is he going to hear me?" I couldn't tell if he was plugged in. I didn't like that thought and I didn't like the feeling. It was a feeling of distance and I am not ready for that distance.
Don't get me wrong! I am all for giving my kids personal space to pursue their interests. I am a mom who requires an above average amount of personal space myself, but finding a balance in this new era is a challenge for me.
When to engage or not to engage? That is the question!
So we need to make some changes around here, nothing drastic, just sublte changes that reflect family intentionality.
Maybe more family game nights? More intentional conversations in the car, in the kitchen, etc.? More intentional set the table, sit down as a family meals?
We do all these things, but in this plugged in age I feel the need to fight alittle harder to maintain connection while finding the balance in the letting go that I know is necessary.
So for those of you who have already been there and done that....how did you do it? How do you let go and hold on at the same time?