I don’t know about you, but at best I feel a very very average parent. I try to think of simple ideas I can do to make our children feel how important they are to us, despite the chaos and busy-ness of day to day life. And my general incompetence at juggling everything!
Our middle one – my sweet lovely 11 year old boy often misses out on that precious one to one time children really thrive on. He’s generally less vocal and less demanding than he could be, and keeps everything very close to his chest. He’s been a bit quieter than normal lately, and was giving nothing away, so I had an idea …
It’s getting darker earlier now, and what’s more exciting than a very early evening walk outside in the dark, with your extremely riveting mother?
… which I explained had two rules:
1. We walk fast (so I get some exercise).
2. He’s totally in charge of the route, choosing whether we turn left or right at each tuning and when we go home.
He was a bit dubious about the point of it, but when I said it would be just me and him, he leapt up, flung on his trainers and off we went!
We started walking and I quickly got the conversation going with some comment about hoping we would bump into a fox … and suddenly we were nattering and joking with each other while we walked.
It really was so so lovely! We bonded, my son felt close to me again and he’s totally opened up to me on a day to day basis. He’s been talking more about things on his mind, and has just well, ‘perked up’.
We have one ‘night walk’ a week and it’s been brilliant for us.
I appreciate this isn’t an option for everyone for logistical reasons, but if you can do it, I can’t recommend it enough. A simple walk and talk can be a wonderful thing.
Please give it a try if you can.
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