“Sometimes, when I’m around people, I still feel lonely.” -Ella, age six
She curls up on the couch and speaks the words that are quoted above. I go over to her, kneel down, and begin to rub her back. “Tell me about it?” I listen as she moves and sits up and a light shines in her eyes. “I just want to go on a date with you. When can we go on a date?” Oh yes, the date I promised her we’d go on, the date I forgot about, the date I need to mark down so it’s set. Her love language is quality time, and when I’m not giving that time to her, she feels lonely and lost and sad. I tell her I will talk to daddy about a good night to go out. She smiles.
I’ve got to make time for that date.
But there’s the writing, and the contributing, and the conference, and the books, and the commitments, and…
This is not life. Life is full when children are taken on dates, and families spend Saturdays together, and books are read, slowly, and food is made for the hurting, adventures are embarked upon, and laundry is folded with little hands who need to learn. I choose this.
Time is mine for the molding. I choose.
I choose whether or not to sit with my children over breakfast and read to them.
I choose whether or not to gather my children in blankets and read.
I choose whether or not to turn off the T.V.
I choose whether or not to play cards with my son, or draw with my daughter, or read book after book with my littlest one.
I choose whether or not to go to bed early with my husband.
I choose whether or not to use my timely wisely when it comes to writing and planning and traveling.
I choose. The time is mine to use.
I choose dating.