Does this sound familiar?
“Mommy, do you want to play outside?”
Me: “Sure, hun, maybe later” or the famous, “I promise, in 10 minutes we can play.”
How many times have those 10 minutes turned into never? We are all guilty of this. Some will never come to realize how precious those moments could have been.
Why I always say YES
My perspective on “play” shifted three years ago. I was toward the end of my chemo treatments for breast cancer (that’s a different post for another day). I was still working full-time, so naturally by the end of the day I was extremely exhausted. It was around 8pm and I was in bed, laptop while watching a repeat episode of New Jersey Housewives. It was that time in the evening when dishes are done, lunches are made, and all mommy duties have been checked off for the day. For some, it’s much later than 8pm, but like I said, fatigue came early for me during treatments. Not 5 minutes into my relaxed state of mind did my 4-year-old daughter come in the bedroom and say, “Mommy, do you want to go outside and look at the stars?” Umm. My first thought was “No way!” But in a matter of seconds my entire perspective on motherhood changed. With my health in question, I didn’t know how many more times we would be able to sit outside and gaze at the stars. I closed the laptop, grabbed a blanket and said, “Absolutely, that sounds like a great idea”.
Fast forward to now. My daughter is seven and we were blessed with a baby boy a little over a year ago. We play. We play a lot! The possibility that my life on this earth would be cut short at 31 changed me. I wish it didn’t take cancer for me to receive this gift and now I want to give it to you. The gift of saying YES. It’s beautiful and full of love, memories, and gratitude.
When you hear:
“Mommy, can I play with your hair?” You: Yes.
“Do you want to play school with me?” You: Yes.
“Let’s go outside and play ball!” You: Yes. Yes. Yes.
I challenge you to say, yes
Every time. Yup, that’s right. Every time your child wants to play – say yes. I promise that whatever you are doing in that moment or whatever it is you are about to do will still get done. Eventually. I know that what I’m saying isn’t anything new or something that we all haven’t heard. But have you really listened? The best and most important part of being a mom is quality one-on-one time. It’s what really matters and what they will remember forever. The dishes can wait. The laundry will always be there, but our children won’t stay young forever and tomorrow or 10 minutes is NEVER promised. Don’t take these moments for granted. Do me a favor. When you do this, remember how happy you made that little human. Remember that smile, the laughter, and that moment in time. Write it down, take a picture, make it count. Just say YES.
Don’t just make memories, be present in them. There were no stars that night, but the moon was sure shinning bright.