How has your week been? Well, last week was a pretty slow week for me, mainly spent indoors following the political razzmatazz. My brain was focused only on that, and that focus spilled over into this week. Let me just say this: May justice be our shield and defender.
Anyway, earlier this week, I received an email from a reader –Njeri Nganyi, a fellow mom who was talking about how she spends time with her daughter during the school holidays. I’ll dive straight into her email.
“Hi Maryanne, I liked your last article: Are you Engaging Your Children in Political Discussions?, which is important especially when we are trying to help them not carry the tribal cross.
For now, I’d like to contribute to Mummy Tales… having learnt something new this holiday season and which I’d like to share with other parents.
Indeed, it would be a dream come true for any mother to want to be home and bring up her children while her financial obligations and needs are met by someone else. Sadly, this is not a reality for many moms today since times have changed and not many families have the luxury of being sustained by one income. We have to learn how to strike that balance.
For us, the school holidays with our nine year-old daughter Shani is almost a non-negotiable. My husband and I are intentional in taking leave during the school holiday and during this time, we normally plan for different activities such as travelling upcountry to Western Kenya to visit with family, watching movies, swimming and other engaging activities.
Thankfully, I have a good employer and I find myself able to get time off when necessary. I am always careful to deliberately set aside at least two weeks every school holiday to spend as much time with her.This August though was a little different. We took the first week to go on holiday and returned just in time for the elections. After voting, I stayed home, closely following the elections events as they unfolded. I had vowed not remain glued to the TV, so I followed the events periodically.
What I ensured I did was take time to perform another duty; investing in Shani. My greatest desire is for her to be a better person and not a liability to the society.
I helped my daughter with her studies since now she is in upper primary (class 4) and things are getting tougher. This is the point where kids learn certain concepts for instance division in Mathematics and if they don’t get it, they might end up disliking the subject altogether which compromises their chances to excel in careers that require the subject.
Having spent every waking moment with Shani and doing different activities such as creatively designing artworks with affirmations, cooking and performing chores around the house, I actually realized that she had no interest in TV at all! What a blessing! I managed to distract her from being a zombie and couch potato.
Shani was excited about helping out in the kitchen and house chores and was even more excited about doing all manner of creative things rather than being glued to the TV. It is at this point I realized how much those two weeks meant because the conversations we had were priceless. We normally have heart to heart sessions but this went deeper into sex education, self-love, self-value and confidence.
It was time to go back to work and both of us were almost in tears. Our children need us to be present, share the love and impart the knowledge that only a parent can do better than anyone else.”
Thanks Njeri for sharing. Do you relate to her experience? Are you deliberate in spending time with your children? How do you do it?
Mummy Tales is a blog dedicated to empowering its readers on different aspects of maternal and newborn health, as well as various issues surrounding motherhood and women. Read more motherhood experiences of Kenyan moms here. Follow Mummy Tales on: FACEBOOK l INSTAGRAM l TWITTER