Years ago, I was working on a Saturday at my office when I got a call from my dad asking me to meet up with him for coffee. All I could think of was how much work I had to do. And as unwilling as I was to stop and meet up with him, jackknifing my time at the office that weekend and my progress on that mountain of deadlines, I agreed.
He died, suddenly, shortly after that Saturday coffee klatch. I am forever grateful that I did not say “no” to him that day – although I was ready to do so. I am forever grateful that at least on that day, I did something that would leave me with no regrets. That I gave him my time.
TIME. It’s what our kids want most from us and what WE want most from our kids. YET, it is a struggle to give as there are so many demands on our time. When our children are young, we are exhausted by how much time and focus they want from us. And when they are older, we are frustrated by how much time and focus we want from them. Or at least that is where I am at age 60 with two grown children of my own.
Here is what I have learned. Nothing makes you realize how important it is to stop, drop and be present with the people you love the most in your life. Why? Because they love us the most and because of that, we take it all for granted. We naively assume they will always be there.
They will not always be there. But, they are here now. So now is the time to give them the time that will sustain us when they are gone – literally or figuratively.
Now that the holidays are over, and the gift of time is something that we are likely more able to give, give it freely. It will not hit your credit card, or put a dent in your cash flow. But, it will pay dividends beyond your imagination now and into the future – as it does for me – every time I remember that Saturday afternoon coffee date with my beloved dad.
Great article, Susan!