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Challenge: Finding Your Voice as a Parent

Don’t forget to listen to the giggles

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Listen up mamas,

Don’t be like me.

Don’t forget to listen to the giggles.

Today, while my kids were laughing and splashing in a tiny kiddie pool in our backyard, I felt a ping of sadness and guilt for all they were missing.

All that has been canceled.

As if it was somehow my fault.

As if our decisions to keep them in quarantine was having negative side effects on their happiness.

But then, one of my kids screamed, “BEST DAY EVER!”

And I was jerked out of my pity party for one.

A realization hit me like a ton of bricks.

I forgot to actually listen to the giggles.

We were looking at the exact same events, the exact same activities, at the exact same time and seeing completely different views.

Mine clouded by my own guilt and insecurities for all they were missing.

And they saw all the things I was giving them.

All the little moments we were making into memories.

All the reading.

All the games.

All the puzzles.

All the crafts.

All the running through sprinklers mid-day.

All the stopping to LITERALLY smell the roses.

All the things they beg to do on any normal day. The stuff, some days, our schedules simply don’t have time for, we’ve actually been doing now.

All the simple little things we’ve been doing ARE enough.

They are blissfully unaware of the worry I’ve kept hidden in my heart about this stressful time in our world.

Which means I actually AM doing my job. Not failing them like my guilt-clouded perspective lead me to believe.

While they’re laughing and splashing about, I hold the worries of the outside world.

That’s my job as their mom.

As their human shield.

My oldest told me today that he’s happy he gets to be quarantined with me, because even though he misses his my friends and the rest of our family, he was happy he gets to see me and hug me everyday.

Even with all he is missing, I’m still enough for him.

Just when I felt like I couldn’t hold the weight of guilt any longer, my kids give me permission to let it all go.

Even with so much that is canceled these days, some of their favorite things are not.

So, don’t forget to listen to the giggles, Mama.

YOU are more than enough.

Originally published on Raising Humble Humans

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