Watching out for your kids needs

We hit a rough patch with my oldest. For several days, it seemed every little thing would  escalate into something bigger. One second, things were perfectly fine. The next, we were having a meltdown or an outburst of anger.

When our children do this, they are usually craving for our attention. It is their way of telling us that their little world is topsy-turvy and they need us. My children need me. Not just the mom-on-duty me, but the real me. Not the me that is answering their hundreds of questions while mentally writing a to-do list. I need to tune into their little troubles. However small and insignificant they seem to us, they are big to them.

So the two of us headed out alone. We went to the library and took our time picking out books. We went to Starbucks, coffee and milk in hand, we sat and read our library books. Just the two of us. Having fun and enjoying each other. We finished our afternoon off with an errand to the grocery store. He was all gentlemanly. He didn’t want me to put a single bag in the trunk. “I’ll do it, Mom.”

He came home with a new feeling of belonging. He knew he had had all of me for an afternoon. I came home having forgotten all the issues of the last few days. I had taken the time to remember who he was, and all the little things that I love about him.

A one-time outing doesn’t necessarily solve all the issues, but it often solves a lot. Remembering that they are little people, just like us, that need attention, can go a long way to bringing things back to right.

It’s easy to get so caught up in the tasks of motherhood that we forget that mothering is about people, relationships, and souls.

Moms, if your kids have been having an extra rough time lately, they might just need you. All of you.


  1. Thanks for this great reminder. It’s so easy to get caught up in the tasks of mothering instead of the relationships. I also find it easy to forget that our kids often simply need exactly what we need when we’re having a hard time: some extra love and attention.

  2. Very graciously written. I have found this to be so true with my girls, as well. But sometimes that is the hardest thing to give them during those times, too.

    (Ann Voskamp once wrote, “Just for today, I will ask for His grace, the moment when I am most repelled by a
    child’s behavior, that is my sign to draw the very closest to that child.”)

    Thanks for the reminder!

  3. Thank you so much for this excellent reminder to give our children the time and attention they so desperately need from us. I have seen our girls’ behavior change almost instantly just by taking a few moments to really listen to them and spend quality time with them individually. Not only does it seem to always improve their behavior, but it does wonders for me as well. I think it is a great feeling to know that you are meeting the needs of your children.

    • Johanna says:

      I agree, once I have taken the time to listen and interact with them personally we all feel better!

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