Musings from Mrs. D: On Coral Reefs (Part 2)
Last week I shared my heart about the Absence of Faith Reef and the dangers it poses to your children. Today, I want to warn you about the Absence of LOVE Reef.
Your children feel secure when they are loved. They are able to trust you and your judgements when they are loved. Loving them is NOT giving them “stuff,” it is giving them yourselves. Listen to them when they call. It breaks my heart to hear a young voice saying over and over “Mom” or “Dad,” trying to get a parent to listen to his very important story or question. I am not advocating allowing interruption all the time, There is a way to teach your children to let you know they need you while learning to wait (tapping the arm, for example), but ignoring a little voice sends a message that says to the child “You are not important.” and this results in the perception that he is not loved. Of COURSE you love your children, but do they KNOW it?
I AM NOT EXAGGERATING . On all our Middle and High School trips, we ask you parents to write a letter to your children. We come armed with boxes of Kleenex. It is unbelievable to watch these kids read their letters and cry. Many a young person has come to me and said, “I didn’t KNOW my parents really cared about me like this.”
Ladies and Gentlemen, these are the kids of wonderful caring parents like yourselves, but their children did not feel loved. Tell them often. Spend time with them. Take them on dates one at a time. Pray with them over big and small things.
And…. LOVE YOUR SPOUSE. When your children see Mom and Dad holding hands, hugging, demonstrating through their actions to one another that they love each other… your children feel loved and secure.
As a child, I remember that anytime we went out my parents stood inside the closed door and hugged and kissed each other goodbye…then we ALL walked out together. That’s crazy you say. NO! I knew my parents loved each other and me. They always told us, “Just in case something happens, we always want to have kissed each other goodbye.”
Well, something DID happen, and one day my Mother did not come back to our earthly home. She is waiting for us in heaven, but to this day I know I was loved by my parents and that they loved each other, and I felt secure in that love. Make memories together and grow your love and respect for one another while you can. YOU will not always be here, but, there is no guarantee that your children will always be with you either.