Sunday, March 20, 2011
Less "Me" Time and More "We" Time
I was thinking about that very thing the other day. I was kind of worn out and I hadn’t had a lot of “me” time in the last few months. I was craving simply being alone at home to do chores. Ever have times like that? But then my thoughts started to roam, a bit. I’ve never been one to pawn off my kids. I like to be at almost everything they are involved in. The window of time is so short – soon they will be out of my home and I will have more than enough “me” time!
I thought about how family oriented our ancestors were. How Hispanics and Africans (and I’m sure other cultures that I’m not aware of) even have generations living together under one roof. If they don’t all live together, they certainly are their own community of support – doing everything for and with each other. They’ve threaded together a legacy and a strong sense of who they are. They’ve given deep roots.
We’ve lost that in mainstream society today.
I hear so much about how we need a “girl’s night out” and parents need date night. All true. But I think the prominence and the way those things have been highlighted, possibly, could be focusing too much on ourselves and what we individually need instead of focusing more on family time.
I believe that the more a family hangs out together and does things together, the more they will be interwoven together. The kids won’t grow up and want to go off on their own – instead, they will continue to want to be an integral part of their family. Sure, they need to have their own independent lives. But they will be reliable, supportive, and generous with their extended and immediate family. They will prioritize family. Which is needed.
Family is the basis of everything. Who we become stems a great deal from the family we grew up in. How we view ourselves, our outlook on the world, our values….all start within and from our families. We mold our children – shaping their outlook and self esteem in critical ways.
So much today focuses on “me.” We are told we deserve getaways, time outs, breaks, and times of renewal. I’m not diminishing that at times those very things are needed and in fact are deserved. But they should be “stand-out” times. They, in fact, shouldn’t replace family time, family getaways, family moments, family breaks together, and family gatherings.
As my children grow up, I see how I desire more “we” time with them. I still need a little “me” time, but I’d rather put that aside to soak up and bond every instance I can with the ones God has given me. For I know if I put myself first, they will learn to put themselves first. But if I put them first, then maybe they’ll learn to put others first too.
It’s a balancing act. We should never deprive ourselves of necessary times of refreshment and renewal. But at the same time, we shouldn’t pamper ourselves and put “me” before “we.”
A healthy family knows how to take care of one another so that the more you focus on each other and know each other inside and out – the less “me” you will need – for each person will take good care of the other.
“We” make a much stronger and healthier entity – than simply just “me.”