Is it just me or are we speeding right through Thanksgiving and heading right toward Christmas? What happened to Thanksgiving? Yesterday it was Halloween. Everywhere I turn, I see Christmas advertisements. Black Friday deals are flooding my inbox. It seems like I haven’t even had time to enjoy the fun of Thanksgiving.
As I stopped to think about plans for this Thanksgiving, I tried to pick out one thing that I am thankful for this year that really stands out. Of course I’m thankful for the usual stuff (that I can sometimes take for granted): food, shelter, friends, and family. The fact that I couldn’t pin point something right away spoke volumes. I guess some years are just better than others. If there’s one thing I know, it’s that no matter how bad I think things are, they could always be worse.
After thinking for a while, I finally realized what I was thankful for. Time. Not time that I had, but time that I would make. I’m thankful that I’m able to carve out some time to spend time with my daughter. When my boys were younger, I was a stay at home mom, and my whole day revolved around their schedule. They had their share of quality time when they actually wanted it. Now that they are older they are much more independent and I’m actually really good with that. Unfortunately my daughter hasn’t had the same experience. Since she started school, I have been a working mom. I wouldn’t say that one way is better than the other (most days), but they are both completely different. Lately, time just isn’t on my side. I’m thankful that I have to power to make the choice to change that.
Carving out time for my little one isn’t that complicated. I know exactly what she likes. She may only be six years old, but make no mistake, she knows what she likes and she knows what she wants. Sometimes that kind of certainty can make a situation challenging, but fortunately she’s always a happy girl.
As I was walking through the store recently, I noticed a book that I had seen a Facebook ad for. It was a coloring book for adults that claimed to calm and destress. A light bulb went on in my head. Coloring! My little one loves to color and that is something that we can do together. After looking through a few coloring books, I realized that we pretty much had already accumulated every book that the store sold. I did however, pick up a nice, big new box of crayons. There is something I love about sharp crayons. Maybe it’s the smell. It seems like they color so much more evenly than the old crayons that aren’t sharp anymore. I love a new box of crayons!
When I came home from the store with a box of new crayons my daughter’s eyes lit up. Her smile was priceless. I told her we were going to color together, so naturally she wanted to color right away. That’s where the whole event peaked. We colored for a few minutes and then she eventually got distracted and began doing something else. I kept right on coloring though, with her right next to me watching while she played with her toys.
It was a good hour before my hand started to hurt and I decided I had had enough. The funny thing is, she had had enough as well. If I had colored with her for 30 minutes, it would have been enough. She is so used to me saying not right now every time she asks me to play with her. We have to do this, we have to do that. We have to go here and there. Our life is so fast paced that there really isn’t much time to sit and have quality time. I myself am used to it, but for a 6 year old I can understand how it can be tough.
I know for certain now, this year I am thankful for time. If I had to choose one thing to point out, it would be time. All it took was a few minutes. All it will take in the future is a few minutes, but I’m thankful for time with my kids. Maybe next year I will be thankful for carving out time for myself! A girl can dream.
Thanksgiving is a great time to reflect, and you don’t necessarily have to pick something that you already have. You can be thankful for what you are going to do and what you have the power to do. Happy Thanksgiving, and here’s to hoping everyone is thankful for food, shelter, friends, and family. If you have more than that to be thankful for, well, then you are very fortunate.