As a parent, I spend a lot of time thinking about how I can teach my kids and help them grow into happy, healthy, thoughtful, and kind adults. It’s humbling to realize how little control I have over the choices they make and the challenges that come their way. Thankfully, this realization is tempered by the many parenting discoveries my children provide – rich and rewarding lessons that transform my life.
Our California drought is as severe as ever, but we were treated to a delightful rain storm while visiting Gramma in desert Nevada. Anna was amazed at the sight of water falling from the sky, and watching her live in the moment was magical.
As an adult, being in the rain is generally considered annoying, and to be avoided wherever possible. Anna embraced the experience, and as she did I got to relive my own childhood – the sensation of feeling the rain drops on your head, and the satisfaction of bare feet splashing in rain water.
Children make life unpredictable. They can feel demanding, and the sleep deprivation really chips away at adult productivity. I say it’s a bargain trade for the gift of experiencing life in the moment. As parents, we shoulder responsibility, but in exchange we can relive childhood with a new level of understanding and deeper appreciation.
When did you last truly feel rain on your head? Have you listened to rain lately? Smelled rain? Smelled sunshine? This week, I challenge you: take moment to slow down and experience life at a toddlers space. What does it look like when you chop vegetables for dinner? Wash your hands? Pull clean and warm clothes out of the dryer? Curiosity is the key to both living and learning, and it’s one piece of life that busyness often shoves aside. Make room. And, if you are lucky enough to have little people in your life, prioritize time for hugs, books read at their pace, and silly faces. They grow up fast.
MaryAnne lives is a craft loving educator, musician, photographer, and writer who lives in Silicon Valley with her husband Mike and their four children.
19 thoughts on “Parenting Discoveries: Live in the Moment”
Absolutely beautiful. Beautiful photography. Beautiful message. Beautiful heart! Thank you for sharing!
<3 thank you Dayna.
Last year I totally surprised my daughter when I proposed to go dance in the rain barefoot. :) All kids from neighbour joined us promptly! ;)
Ah, living in the moment! I miss those messages from when I did yoga! Thanks for the gentle reminder as school begins and things begin to get hectic! I’ll try to remember!
I love your post. I especially like your closing paragraph about sharing the moment with your toddler. I am a toddler teacher and would love to share it by parents if you wouldnt mind.
I am happy for you to share this with the parents in your class – thanks for asking!
These photos are great! I always loved Summer Texas storms growing up and playing in the water outside. I have a slightly different view of rain living in Africa with strong storms on tin roofs, but the concept is still the same. Enjoy life’s sweet moments that come your way!
Rain on a tin roof can get VERY loud!
I never really took time to live in the moment until I had my daughter. Watching her amazement at simple things like seeing ants climb into an anthill or the excitement of finding a stick is somehow contagious!
Kids are so brilliant at living in the moment and making the most of everyday life. I love being able to witness and learn from that as a parent!
Beautiful post MaryAnne, writing and images. I really do feel lucky to be a parent and be around children who bring back my own childhood and it is one of the things I like most about your blog, you clearly do too.
Thank you, Ann <3
We’ve been apart from our kids for the last month. They are vacationing with their grandparents. I miss them so much. I promised myself not to get in to the grinding hectic pace of our daily routine and just keep myself to slow down and enjoy every bit of moment with them. Just to consciously enjoy being with them and whatever they like to do. I hope I can keep my promise.
Great post! I just read recently that adults who learn to “savor” the moment are overall more content with their lives. Beautiful photography too.
Thank you, Natalie! Savoring the moment definitely makes me happier.
I could almost smell the rain in those pictures!! I, too, find myself fighting back the annoyance over things being slooooow by taking a moment to revel in my kids’ appreciation for what’s happening right then.
I remember standing in the rain with Jeff right before we started dating as we talked for almost an hour.
Mike and I took MANY walks in the rain when we first met.
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