I’ll tickle your toes. I’ll check for monsters.
I’ll show you the stars and teach you how to reach for them.
Peanut and Twix’s big brother from Alabama has been here for a couple of weeks and we’ve been busy making memories while he’s in middle Missouri. He’s getting to know his new baby sister and reconnecting with his other little sister. There’s almost 5 years in between each one of them and it really drives home the fact that time does indeed fly. Blink and they are no longer babies but emerging tweens!
And it also drives home the importance of *presence*. Almost anyone can have a child and become a parent in the biological sense. But parenting is more than biology. Parenting is presence. It’s being there to tickle their toes; to check for those monsters under the beds; to calm the nightmares at 3am; to kiss away the scraped knees; to teach them how to play fairly. It’s helping them discover their talents and encouraging them to stretch those abilities so they can grow physically, mentally and spiritually.
Being present means providing security and stability in this uncertain world; to know that you’ll be there for them when they need you most. It’s not just enjoying the good times. It’s showing them how to handle disappointments and challenges; how to not become self-absorbed; how to put others above their own wants; how to love unconditionally.
The Investigator is exposed to the worst in parenting in her job with Children’s Services. Every day she sees children who struggle with finding the security and stability…and sometimes safety….needed in order to flourish. These examples are most definitely the extreme and the rest of us shouldn’t think we have a pass when evaluating ourselves. How present are we with the children entrusted into our care? Are we interacting and teaching or letting a constant supply of television, computer, iPads and video games raise our kids for us?
How well are we showing them the stars and teaching them how to reach for them?