Sunday, January 25, 2009

Painful Discovery in Finding Joy

Thomas S Monson gave a General Conference address about “Finding Joy in the Journey.” This talk was the basis for our lesson today in Relief Society and it really got me thinking.

While I was sitting listening to the lesson, I thought about what it meant. Certainly, he couldn’t have meant blogging the day away. Even though that can be a worthwhile activity, it can also take away from important things. Even great things, noble activities, can take away from far better things if you let them.

I know I don’t enjoy time with the children enough.

I have things I want to do. Things I want to accomplish.

And then things I HAVE to do; HAVE to accomplish.

So, if things HAVE to get done. Then that leaves very little time left to spend on things I would like to do. AND when it comes right down to it, I would so rather play with my camera or sew a quilt than build a Bionicle or play Chutes and Ladders.

It’s not that I don’t enjoy my children; it just seems that time is so scarce and I guess I am being a little selfish. I wonder why I have such a difficult time having fun doing some of these little things.

So what I came away thinking about was how can I enjoy the journey when I am doing things that are second on my”want-to-do” list? Sometimes I feel like there is no common ground with my children. I am not into the same things they are and have more fun doing my own things. My hobbies are more solo deals – not meant for two people. And their hobbies – like video games – I have no interest in.

I need to find out how to have fun just hanging out with the kids, no matter what. Sometimes I do, just not all the time. There have been days when we have built forts, played cars, built trains, played with playdough and I have loved it. Some days hanging outside is all we need to do. But most of the time, I have this lagging feeling that something needs to get done.

Be done.

Get checked off.

And I am not even talking about the stuff that I HAVE to do.

I love my children dearly. And the favorite parts of my day are when they give me hugs or tell me about their day. But I need to find a better way to connect with them.

How can I get my actions to coincide with how I feel about them?

How can I enjoy the journey with them just a little more?

Also during the lesson, I had a distinct impression that I need to help my children learn how to find joy in the journey. Help them grab on to life so it doesn’t pass them by. Maybe I felt this so I can learn it myself. I know our Heavenly Father wants to teach this to me… I just need to listen.


Heatherly said...

I can't tell you how much I love this talk. You are such a great example to me! I have your son in my primary class, he has taught me so much. You have done so well helping his inner light shine! Keep doing what your doing!Putting "finding joy in the journey" on that to do list is so in the right direction! love ya! said...

I am sooo the same way. I am really trying to work on that.

Brooke said...

I really need to do more of this, too. I need to help my kids do this, too. Someone once told me that most adults rarely have fun with the same things that their kids do. We just have to make ourselves spend time playing those games, simply because they enjoy them. And we enjoy being with our children. We both benefit. I don't always do this so well, but it made me feel better to know that other mothers get bored playing with their kids, too.

Erin said...

Thank you for this reminder. Joy in the journey. Thank you.

Tink said...

Good thoughts! I don't get to hear these lessons because I'm in Primary, so I appreciate those who give their thoughts. I particularly liked the thought at the end of helping our children find joy in the journey. Sometimes we don't feel the joy enough in our life that we shine to our children just how wonderful the gospel is. If we aren't happy or joyous, why would they want to seek after the gospel? Helping our children find that joy is a great quest in life to fulfill. Thanks for the reminder. Even tho yesterday I really-really wanted a nap, my daughter asked me to play Scrabble. Oh how I wanted to turn her down, but we enjoyed a mother/daughter event! I wouldn't trade it for a nap anytime.

That Girl in Brazil said...

Very poignantly expressed.

I too was touched during that talk, and have been working again and again to incorporate it into my life.

Quite sad, really, how often I need to be reminded.

Thanks for helping the rest of us out -

stACEy♫ said...

we just had this lesson on Sunday too, and I do have to say that I am a MUCH better mom since all are in school. I know that is horrible, but I am LOVING this phase of life. I can have me time, do what feeds me, then I am ready for them when they are home. I didn't do the first few years very well. So I have no advice about it, while Id ont' have regrets, it was what it was, I am making sure to find those moments more in this phase of life.