Living for the moment – learning from our children

When and why do we ever grow out of living for the moment? 

Watch any child and you’ll see that they’re not worrying about what might happen next, or dwelling on what they did yesterday. 

Offer a child an opportunity and they’ll bite your arm off. 

There is something that happens alongside growing up and having responsibilities that seems to stop us from living in the moment. 

As parents, we become even more concerned about doing the right thing, planning things and of course trying to do the best for our children. 

But do these concerns, responsibilities and worries actually stop us from living our own lives and worse still, are we putting unnecessarily restrictions on childhood? 

As adults, when we are offered a spontaneous opportunity, we seem to have an ingrained inclination to say no.

Think about it, when was the last time you said yes? 

Even when given a really minor opportunity, a child will seize the moment. 

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Splashing in puddles, running around on a field, going to a theme park or doing something outside of the normal daily routine, a child is always willing to get involved. 

And yet, even before children get to school, we feel confined to our daily routine. An opportunity to do something else? Oh no, I couldn’t possibly. The children have got nursery / playgroup /  *fill in other unnecessary daily activities*. 

Well what if you asked the kids, would they want to keep up with their usual routine or would a one off, exciting chance of a lifetime be their choice? 

I know what my two would prefer. 

When it comes to the children, I do my very best to say yes. Blogging is really good for me from that point of view, we often get amazing opportunities that I know the kids will love and where possible, I say yes. 

But it’s in my own life that I could take a leaf out of the children’s book. Given the opportunity of a lifetime to do something for me? My first inclination is to say no. 

It’s easy as a mother to feel that we aren’t as important as the rest of the family. After all, by the nature of parenting we have to put everyone else first. 

So just occasionally, I try to do something a little bit spontaneous. 

Today, I heard that there was a possibility that the aurora might be visible from our local area. I had a run planned for the evening. Seeing the aurora locally seemed like a once in a lifetime opportunity, so I decided to do something a bit different. 

I suggested to my friend that we put our head torches on and go running on the Malvern hills in the pitch dark. To my friend’s credit, she immediately said yes. 

Did we see the aurora? Of course not. But it was a spectacular run, hard work but fabulous being there on the very top of the hills in the dark. 

Who knows, maybe I’ll start saying yes more often. 

 

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9 Comments

  1. March 19, 2015 / 8:27 am

    When Ollie was in nursery they’d look at me like I was mad when I’d say ‘we won’t be in tomorrow, there’s a thing on at …(insert castle, museum etc…)’. Friends regularly turn down play dates and parties because their child is in nursery, or goes to a playgroup that morning. It seems so restrictive to me, but they would say kids need routine. I don’t know the answer, but I try to say yes more than no. Still a lot of room for improvement
    Maz recently posted…Science and Engineering WeekMy Profile

    • monsterid March 19, 2015 / 8:37 am

      Thanks Maz. It’s great that you do that. And I do agree that it’s good to have a certain amount of routine, but I’m not sure it’s good to stick to it rigidly at the expense of living your life. It sounds to me like you’ve got the balance just right.xx

  2. March 19, 2015 / 9:48 am

    nice to see the bright side of life, lad you enjoyed the different run, you maybe need to do it again but somewhere different.
    Elaine Livingstone recently posted…Project 365 Week 11My Profile

    • monsterid March 19, 2015 / 2:55 pm

      Thank you Elaine, yes you’re right, we definitely need to keep it up and do something different again next time!x

  3. Izzie Anderton
    March 19, 2015 / 3:10 pm

    All good advice and yes, it’s easy to get stuck in a rut and keep saying, ‘No,’ especially when you’re a mum. Here’s to saying, ‘yes,’ more often and living in the moment.
    Izzie Anderton recently posted…Easter Gifts for Children.My Profile

    • monsterid March 19, 2015 / 3:16 pm

      Thank you Izzie, I’ll certainly be trying to say “yes” a little bit more often 🙂

  4. September 27, 2015 / 1:00 pm

    Saying yes and taking new opportunities is fantastic – we are just returning from a road trip we only decided to make three days before we left. Since you posted this have you done anything else new and exciting?
    Helena recently posted…Two days in Baden-WürttembergMy Profile

    • monsterid September 28, 2015 / 7:21 pm

      Thank you Helena. There’s always something new and exciting going on to be honest. I’m trying to say yes to more things – I’m even having a night away without the children next month. I can’t wait!x

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