Make time to write every day...I make time for my students to write every day. Me? Well...I write lesson plans, and papers for my masters classes, and emails to parents, and comments on student work, and observations from working with students. Does that count? Probably not for this challenge, which is titled "Slice of Life." The goal is to capture a moment of my day in writing. All of this sounds so easy, but here I sit, feeling like my students probably feel when I tell them "keep your pencils moving. Try to write more today than you did yesterday. Push yourselves to write more." Really? Nothing like walking a few steps in their shoes to put things in perspective. Writing is hard. Generating a topic, writing about it in a way that makes others want to read it, gathering the courage to share it...writing is not for the faint of heart. So, here I go, listening to my teacher voice and pushing myself to write.
My 7-year-old daughter has gymnastics on Friday afternoons. One hour after I get home from the last day of the school week I have to convince her to get into her leotard and head back out for an hour of jumping, stretching, cartwheeling, and vaulting. She doesn't love it until she gets there. I get it. On Friday afternoon, who doesn't want to just be home? But once she gets there she is all smiles. Tonight I sat on the other side of the glass window where all parents sit and wait, and I watched her. If you were to walk into this room, you'd see parents reading books, chatting with other parents, tapping on their phones or tablets, some even with laptops; the weekly routine of supporting your child's dream of being an Olympic gymnast someday and knocking a few things off your own to-do list, even if that's "take some time for myself."
Tonight, I figured out why she loves gymnastics. Sure, the trampoline and foam pit are fun but I couldn't help but notice her smile get even brighter when she looked over to the window and saw that I was watching her. For a solid hour my daughter gets my undivided attention and we aren't even in the same room. Separated by a wall of glass, we smile, wave, wink, I remind her to pay attention to her coach, she gives me the "oops, I forgot!" smile and gets back to whatever floor sequence the class is practicing.
I'm grateful for this hour, but it reminds me that we don't have to go to gymnastics to share these moments together. I'm reminded of how important it is to leave the housework and school work and social media alone and give my attention to my children. Of course I know this already, but these reminders still shout out to me like a shriek that cuts through the coldest winter night, "Put your stuff away and share moments, make moments, with your children!" I'm going to go do just that.