Lessons Learned

Everything you need to know you learned in kindergarten – and sharing is probably the most important lesson.

Child Number One has it easy. Everything is his: his clothes, his toys, his dog and his parents.

Child Number Two has to learn: these are my brother’s and I need to ask.

With the arrival of the second child, both have to learn to share “Mommy-time” and that is the toughest lesson to learn.

Sharing time. That has been something that my family has finally come to understand this fall. Like many parents, we set time aside for each boy so that we can take them to their activities. At one point, I cursed my stupidity for not scheduling some of these simultaneously so that I could have a little “me-time”. Instead, though, I have loved the “we-time” when I get to be alone with just one son. Three months into the school year, both boys now appreciate that lessons for one means time with Mom for the other.

And over the past three months, I realized that I have to find “me-time” so that I can have more family time, leading me to planning two weekday runs at lunch time; 50 minutes is just long enough for me to get 5 miles in, stop sweating and change before the bell goes. This gives a whole new meaning to the word “stress” but it also creates me-time and we-time, and that throws the balance in the other direction.

Late this afternoon, I had planned to run 15 miles. I was so determined to get that time for my run that I sat both boys and Daddy at the kitchen table yesterday and went through the weekend – hour by hour – of friends coming over, swimming lessons, grocery shopping, church….Beside 4:00 on Saturday, I wrote “Mom’s long run.”

And, sure enough, today at 4:00, both pairs of lips quivered.
“You’re leaving us alone?” they asked.
“No, Daddy is home.”
“But…”
“We talked about this and we planned for it. This is my time to run.”
Without any more fuss, they let me go.

Two miles down the road, I thought about the sharing that had happened – planned, yes, but I’ll take it.

Now, if I could just get them to take a nap every afternoon.

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5 comments

  1. Failing to plan is planning to fail. That is smart that you include the entire family on what is planned – of course, unforeseen circumstances can always pop up but for the most part, planning ahead usually equals success and you proved that. Hope the 15 miler was awesome!

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  2. Along with the kiddos, I think you deserve the daily nap, too. Talk about impossible.
    I'm with you though, it is great to have the alone time with one kid, and provide focused attention, especially when you both recognize and appreciate it.
    As for running, I'm impressed with your mid-day 5-miler, and well, looks like you only have to get 1 more 15-miler for your goal, and I do hope that 10.8K awards egg nog. That would be great.

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  3. I like how you do “we time” with your kids. When our boys get a little older and into doing their own activities, that is definitely something my husband and I plan on doing too!
    Yay for your “me” time too! I think it's so important to get out and have your own time.

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