I’ve noticed a trend in my parenting that mostly I think is pretty cool, but sometimes makes me feel like I’m falling short. I don’t really talk much about the future with my girls. For starters, I’m just not a big talker. This has always been something I feel self-conscious about but recently someone described it in the best way ever. She said that she likes how I don’t waste the air (or the page) with unnecessary words.
So often times the girls and I drive places in silence or eat together in silence. When we do talk it’s about the way things are right now. We discuss the things we like, funny things we saw, read, or heard. We might mention future events but most of the time (unless we’re gearing up for a Disney trip) we don’t dwell on the details.
The only time I become aware of this is when a big event is on the horizon. Most recently it is a trip to visit my family and to throw my best friend, Kristin, a bridal shower. Everyone keeps asking me if the girls are excited. Usually I answer “I don’t know.” We don’t talk about it a lot. It’s going to be great and they will have a wonderful time but it just doesn’t pop up in our conversations.
For most of my life I was always looking ahead. I think that I talked more about upcoming events then anything else. I was always excited about something in the future but never really blissful in the present moment. When I was a little girl all I wanted was to be a teenager, when I was a teenager all I wanted was to be in college, when I was in college all I wanted was to graduate and get married, when I got married all I wanted was to have babies, and now I am trying to only want to be happy right where I am.
I am not sure in the nature versus nurture game which side wins. The girls tell me every once in a while that they can’t wait to be grown-ups. I guess it is a natural part of being human. I like to hear their ideas but don’t talk too much about “what they will be when they grow up.” I haven’t put a lot of conscious energy into it, but I hope I am nurturing them to honor the present moment and who they are right now. I don’t want them (or me) to wish their childhood away.
I hope that no one gets offended if they ask me if the girls are excited to see or do something and I say “No, not really.” I like to think it is because we are too busy with the now to be anywhere else…