By Meg Schlabs. 3-4 minute read.
A few months ago I got an email saying my kids had the option of doing in-person school, even though we were still in covid times. It took us all of 3 seconds to decide that this was the right choice for our family. By mid-October I was showing up for my first full week at work, in my office, alone. Hallelujah, freeeeedom! And I did a little jig.
Months later however, I’m noticing myself looking at the clock every day at 3pm wishing I was the one picking them up from school instead of our nanny. Covid has made us all question lots of things – and I guess for me, it helped me clarify the boundaries of my work & life. How many hours did I want to be a designer, and how many did I want to be plain ole mommy?
It was pretty clear that I missed my kids, but when there are three of them, it’s hard to feel like we’re really connecting. I use the “group like items” method when I’m around them. All of you, go play. All of you, stop it. All of you, eat these vitamins. Sometimes these feelings of missing my kids come and go, but I observed this one lingering until finally I couldn’t ignore it anymore. I needed a change and my goal was focused time with them – not group activities!
Now on Wednesdays from 3-5pm I have a date rotation with each kid. One trip to Barnes & Nobles for zombie books. One trip to Sephora for lipstick. Dating your kids, it turns out, is really fun. I found myself come alive when I got to bring them into my adult world. I was chatting to my 10 year old about the last good book I read and I told him the entire plot. (His response – does someone always die in your books?)
When we have multiple kids at home, sometimes the only way to get this connection is to break up the party. Even tho these lil humans are tiny, they have the same needs that we do. We all need moments in our life where we can say anything to someone … and they respond with empathy and love. To feel a connection with another person is one of the most basic needs humans have. And dating your kids will strengthen your connection with them and give them a sense of value.
Have you been dating your kids? If so, what’s been the most fun one lately?
Wife, Mom, Designer, MotherLift