Sharing Joy With Your Children

As a mom, I often feel like my kids are my whole life.  Caring for them, entertaining them, reading about how to care for them better, making sure they have access to all the necessary trappings of a "good life" both emotionally and physically...it's exhausting!  We seek out activities that they will enjoy, things that are "child-appropriate".  I also have a tendency to wrap my own identity around them, like when I use phrases such as "I'm a mom" to describe myself.

But we are, in fact, three totally separate people.  I must remain diligent about exploring and identifying myself as an individual.  Not only that, but it's important for me to share these parts of myself with my children.  In my adult life, I have come to know my parents - my own mother particularly - in a way that is completely outside of their role as my guardians. They have shared their opinions, their fears and desires, their likes, dislikes, hobbies and more with me.  The discoveries have been downright fascinating.

I want my children to know me.  To share the things I love so they can understand who I am - aside from being their caretaker.  I would like to pass on some small piece of knowledge.  I'm not talking about wide-reaching, lofty things like my values and beliefs.  I'm talking about the simple things, like how to knit, or bake, or finding adventure in a good book.  This exchange requires me to teach them, have them be with me when I am doing those things rather than shooing them away so I can enjoy some "me time".  Have them interact with rather than just passively benefit from my simple joys.

Here is Koa, sharing one such moment with his father.  Exercise is always a joy at our house.

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