Slow Down

As parents, we are sometimes blessed with the chance to be awed by the clarity, relevance, or humor of our children’s perspectives. This month, I thought I’d share a recent conversation I had with my PreK-aged daughter. It offered me a poignant reminder of something to watch for as we get into the thick of fall schedules.

“Mom, I think you should write to all the parents to not rush so much.”
“What do you mean?”
“Well, I mean that kids like to have time on the playground.”
“Yes, I know.”
“And we are always late to school.”
“Sometimes, yes, we are.”
“A lot of times, Mom. And I like to stop and check on my fairy house and say hi to Jing Xi (the class guinea pig) when I get there, and we never have time to do that.”
“Ok. Maybe tomorrow we can leave a little earlier?”
“A lot earlier, Mom. And I like to stay and play after school, too.”

It occurs to me that what she is really asking for is transition time. I think she is perceiving the hurried feeling that so many parents experience at this time of year. This rush often prevents us from being in the moment, from digging in with our children.

As we work the kinks out of our routines in the next few weeks, we have an opportunity to add in some time for transitions. Whether it’s checking on the fairy house, or spending time learning how to get shoes and coats on, or looking for ants in the cracks of the sidewalk on the walk to school, kids value taking it slow. And while I can’t say that we will never be late or rush again, we will definitely be leaving “a lot earlier” tomorrow.

Best wishes for a S-L-O-W-E-R October!


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