One of the things that I know for sure is that you cannot build nor maintain a strong relationship with anyone without an investment of time. No matter how hard we might want to substitute other things, nothing takes the place of spending time with those we care about.
We can buy our children gifts and send them off on great adventures, and they will benefit greatly from both. We can provide amazing travel experiences and make sure that each one receives the very best education that money can buy. However, if we want to know him and want him to know that we care about him, we must invest our time in him.
It amazes me what I learn when I take the time to really listen to one of my granddaughters. They have such sweet insight into life, and I learn something beautiful each time I stop my hectic pace and just listen. It still astounds me the things I would miss if I didn’t relax and have lazy conversations with my daughter who is still at home. She keeps me young. As tired as I might be at the end of the day, she always adds sweet value to my life. If I didn’t spend time with her and listen to what is important to her, I could not possibly expect her to believe that I care about her. And it doesn’t stop there … No matter how long I am married, my marriage is never beyond needing the investment of time. It simply cannot thrive without both of us setting aside the time to connect.
So, as a parent, do not lose sight of the fact that your child needs you to invest your time in him. It takes time to show that you care. It takes tuning out all the other noise and being totally present with your child for him to truly feel your love and concern. Sometimes we send our child very mixed messages. We may tell him how important he is to us, but do we STOP and give him our undivided attention? If we don’t, then we are saying one thing but demonstrating another.
Michael J. Fox said, “Family is not an important thing, it is everything.” We all need to be reminded to invest in what really matters!