I think we would all agree that it’s important to spend quality time with our children. But the operative word here is “quality”. How good is that time for us and especially our children when we are too tired to throw the ball or chase, or be chased as, the Evil Queen? When we miss all the fabulous made-up stories, or hear about the heartaches of being a teen when all we can think of is what we didn’t get done, what we have left to do and how tired we are?
What makes it quality time with our kids is being focused on them and what they are saying. Being present and aware so we don’t, for example, forget to strap them in, or get angry over spilled milk. Having the energy – and patience – to sit for an hour playing their games or going for a walk with them.
We can’t take good care of our children if we ourselves are not taken care of. It’s that simple. If we too tired, too overwhelmed, too stressed out, how does that translate into quality time? And more than that, what do our children see?