Creating Meaning in Little Ways

Savor the moments of your life


When my youngest was an infant there was an evening when we had company over. After dinner my husband took the adults into the living room to chat. I took the baby into the bedroom to nurse, rock, and put to bed. I wanted to get back to adult conversation and it seemed to be taking an eternity to get him to sleep. I wished he would just fall asleep! Then it occurred to me that he would grow fast and soon he, like his four year old sister, would no longer need to be rocked. I paused and mentally recorded his small body, his length, his soft breathing; I relaxed into the moment and saved that memory. From then on I noted how his legs got longer and rocking switched to rubbing his back in bed and finally to a good night kiss. Now my “baby” is nineteen, thousands of miles away, having the time of his life and I am glad that I paused and lived in the moments.

Some of you are longing for a child, or happy without them, some are racing to meet schedules of pick up, homework, soccer or piano practice. Some of you, like me, have graduated from the parent as manager/orchestrator to parent as consultant.

What you do matters, it matters immensely, to you as well as your children. I want you to enjoy as much of every moment as possible – and no, not all parenting moments are enjoyable. So slow down, enjoy the good times, learn from the hard times, and bask in the love of your children, your partner, your friends. Do it now.

Making meaningful moments really isn’t hard. Observing Shabbat can be a great way to create a moment. Make it family time. Have a meal that is fun – order pizza if you don’t have time to cook. Spend time without phones or electronics. Talk. Play games. Sing. Laugh. Tell your family, “I want to remember times like this because I love you so much.” Let them know that you are making a memory.