What Memories are you Making for your Children?
By Rita Davidson
This past weekend was Father’s Day. A day that brings back fond memories of my own father. Eating meals with him, watching him putter around the house on Saturday mornings, watching him shovel out the driveway on a stormy, winter morning to get to work. I remember the hot, sweaty summers picking up hay, and apples on our farm. The Sundays where we were not allowed to wash on Sunday, and the days were somehow quieter, since most stores were not open.
As he got older, I remember his hands as they held mine when I had to say goodbye. We had only moved out just one year before he really started to deteriorate. The cups that got heavier that he had to replace with lighter cups, all pulled at my heartstrings.
In the end, I remember the last time I seen him on this earth after he was rushed to the hospital, his eyes, meeting mine with so much emotion, just as he was slipping into a coma, his hand gripping mine. I miss my dad, so very much.
How much more do we appreciate our parents with each passing decade?
Memories for us are Sunday Mass, being snowed in and drive-in nights. We have our ‘drive-in list’ to get together. Window screens, chairs, essential oils for insects, food, blankets, DVD player, pillows. We’ve all come to expect certain things on that night to make it ‘just right’. Year after year this has built up such memories in our family, we can’t wait until it opens every year. It’s like our own mini-vacation.
Christmas is like that too, certain preparations, certain foods, all lend themselves to making Christmas just right. Even though we know this isn’t a secular celebration, there are still certain traditions that make it ‘just right’. Midnight Mass, the incense, the low lights and the tiring, late night, long drive home.
Summer has certain memories and winter has certain memories. Every time of life has special memories.
Talking to a good friend she was telling me how they prepare for camping. How difficult the preparation is, with so much to pack and prepare. And the discomfort of not being at home for those long days.
How the kids always have to have ‘certain’ things. Foods she would never normally buy, but always are bought for that trip. Certain junk food, or sliced meat for example. But the memories that are made, are priceless.
We often don’t realize, as we are busy just trying to get through the day, planning these outings or getaways, that our kids are forming memories they will never loose.
Making the Wrong Memories
When things were tough and money was short, did you snap at them? Were you grumpy telling them in certain ‘silent’ ways that you ‘hate being broke’? Like God made a mistake? and giving them ‘bad feelings’ about accepting God’s crosses?
When things are more difficult, when sickness strikes, did you carry your cross valiantly so they could see what it was like to suffer joyfully?
When getting ready for Mass did you rush out the door, or did you plan ahead to leave a bit early so everyone could be recollected when you got there?
As life promises to keep whizzing by us in this fast paced life we live, let us not forget the children. Our children are growing up faster than we can imagine. The important memories you make of the faith, is what will carry them through the difficult times and make God real for them.
Are you so disconnected from your life that you can’t take time to be ‘there’ for them? Those memories they are creating everyday need your presence. I don’t mean your physical presence, I mean your emotional presence. Your mind-fulness that makes up; who you are as a parent.
Be sure to ‘disconnect’, from all those distractions (yes, Facebook is one) that grab for your attention, and be fully there for your children.
The Best Memories of the Faith
Morning prayers, evening rosaries, feast day celebrations, baptism days, somber Lenten days, to anxious Advent days, take the time to create for them the best memories of the faith ever. So when they look back at their life, their memories of the faith, will be so sweet, so tangled full of happiness, that they will embrace them as they grow. Never leaving the faith that nourished them as they grew.
Be sure to provide them with fun memories! Even if your worried to death about not being able to pay the mortgage this month, it’s the happy memories they will remember when things were difficult. And WHY should we worry when God’s will takes care of every detail of our life?
We cannot be there for them, once they are out in the world. There is one day we will no longer hold their hand. Have you prepared them for life, beyond the school books, and difficulties? Strong memories of the faith that carried you through the tough times, so they will come to know Jesus intimately in their own life.
What memories are you planning to make today? Share with me!
©Copyright 2013 Rita Davidson Little Flowers Family Press All Rights Reserved.
Rita is a Catholic wife and mother of seven children. Mark is her ever patient husband. She reverted back to the faith when her oldest was making her First Communion. By then, she had completed degrees in Hairdressing and Make up artistry. She went on to receive a degree in Natural Health and another degree in Art. At age 26, Rita suffered a minor stroke. With no lasting effects, this dramatically changed her outlook on life. In 1996, Rita began ‘Little Flowers Family Apostolates’ to reach out to other families with her new found faith, by creating unique Catholic books and resources.. In 1999, she wrote the bestselling, ‘Immodesty; Satan’s Virtue’. She was editor of ‘The Catholic Health Letter’ for 7 years. She has been a homeschooling mom for 20+ years, and has written for various magazines. She is honored that families have trusted her with their questions, needs and concerns over the years. She continues to write and reach out to Catholic families with her husband, Mark and their 4 boys through http://www.LittleFlowersFamilyPress.com