What kid doesn’t love a new truck or doll? I know that I always looked forward to getting new toys. However, I knew that my dolls or my sweet treats were no substitute for the time I spent with my mom. She raised me by herself and so she did not always have all the time in the world but we had our “mommy and me” moments often enough that it made me aware that she was doing her best. I never felt like she did not have time for me.
I know a woman who has two boys that she raises on her own. The father is still in the picture but he comes once a month or less as he lives out of state. The boys are ten and three years of age. He buys his boys whatever they want and plays games with them in the few hours he is there. When he has to leave, his younger son becomes distraught and his behavior changes for the next few days. He is clingy to his mom and freaks out if she leaves him for even a moment.
Daddy brought all the fun; mommy gets to clean up and pick up the pieces of tiny broken hearts. He does not realize how much precious time he is missing by being away for so much of their lives. Mommy is often overwhelmed with the day-to-day operations to spend much time playing games. It is always easy to have them watch tv or go play in their rooms. I am guilty of this at times, but sometimes you have to put the dishes, broom, work, etc., down and spend precious time with your child.
I am a caregiver to my mother and a single mother to my almost four year old son so my time is highly limited as I am always busy doing something. The past few days have been a nightmare with my son’s behavior and I feel that it is mostly because I am always so busy that I can’t spare an hour here or there to play with him and that is not fair to him. I pray that I can get our train back on track and we can have good days instead of bad. I don’t want to miss out on this precious time because once it is gone, it’s gone for good.
I’m not saying don’t buy your children gifts; I am saying if you do buy your child a new toy to take time out of your day to play it with him/her. Those few hours each day build into something that will last a lifetime. I wish you the very best.