Oh, shit…that’s me. Like, daily.
I hear myself tell my kids to get off their technology – from my desk as I’m working on my computer.
I say “it’s a beautiful day – go outside and play” - as I stay indoors and do housework.
I tell them to eat less sugar – as I enjoy wine later in the evening.
And I’ve always got a rationalization for everything: they’re playing games on apps/I’m working; they need to get their energy out running around/I need to clean the house and get dinner started; refined sugar is the devil/wine is natural and about the only sugar I consume.
So what’s wrong with any of that? Nothing really, in moderation. But I constantly remind myself of the adage that my kids will do what I do, not what I say. Sometimes with my OCD I get completely consumed with working in one way or another and forget to have fun.
If I want my kids to keep being the incredible people they already are, I have to remember to balance my actions with my words. I have to find the truth between what I preach and what I parent, because those two words aren’t synonymous. I have to step away from working and take the kids to the park.
We did that, in fact, just yesterday. We managed to make our way all around the park for a couple of hours, walking, playing, talking – in between the endless rain showers this summer has brought. We had our ice cream money with us in the hopes of a treat, but the vendor wasn’t out that day because of the earlier deluge.
Our afternoon ended up being just as sweet anyway.
Stepping out into life with the people I love is so much more fulfilling than simply telling them to do it without me while I focus on working. It made me wonder why I’m the hypocrite that I sometimes am. There are those times when work is a priority in my day, but I’ve found the deeper I look into what I really want, the less is my hypocrisy.
Some of what I really want is for my kids to connect with Nature, friends and family, and animals; I think that’s a better road to self-discovery than Minecraft. Another thing I want is to spend time with them as they venture into the world, and yet another desire of mine is that they have healthy, strong bodies and minds as they grow.
I don’t think that’s asking too much, but it does require my active participation and my own self-realization of when I deserve a big H sewn onto my shirt. That’s when it’s time to put what I really want first, and vacuuming or research second.