Have you thanked your kid today? It’s an honest question. Sometimes I forget. We are so busy teaching our kids manners – pleases and thank yous for all the little things we do – getting them chocolate milk, helping them tie a shoe, zipping their jacket. Just as important, though, is them realizing how much we appreciate all the little things they do.
This morning was hectic, as usual, and when I went to drop Jake off in the next classroom up (they are combined together first thing in the morning), I noticed that his class was picking up their stuff to line up and come back to their own class. He was a bit disappointed not to go to the different room, but I was honestly thankful to have a few quiet moments with him before work.
We went to his room and I began to set out his breakfast. He decided he wasn’t hungry, and we were looking around the class. I noticed the pile of the kids’ workbooks in the corner, and started thinking that I’d never seen the contents. So, I asked him if he wanted to show me his workbook. We sat down at the table as he flipped through the workbook, page by page, showing me what he’d accomplished in the last 8 months. It was a fantastic moment of sharing, and seeing his pride and sense of accomplishment was a great way to start the morning.
After work, my husband had taken them to the playground. They were in the baseball field throwing and kicking some balls that had been left behind by the school kids. Jake was so excited to see me there, he just wanted to kick the ball back and forth with mama. It was great fun, and exciting to see how dramatically his gross motor skills had developed in just a short year. 365 days. And he was growing up.
Tonight, as I rocked him at bedtime (a routine that I will be very sad of when he grows up), I was thinking about our shared moments. We don’t get a lot of time together during the week, so these moments really mean a lot.
“Jake, thanks for sharing your workbook with mama. That was really special to me, and I think you did a great job on all those pages you worked on. I also wanted to say thank you for playing ball with me at the playground. It was really fun for mama to get to play with you after work, and I had a really good time. Thanks for being such a special kid.”
It just felt right. I’m sure he appreciated the moments with me today, but I wasn’t sure he knew I appreciated them as well. He sat quietly, then looked up and thoughtfully said:
“You are welcome, mama. I love you.”
I love you, too, baby boy. Sweet dreams.