Mom and Me Journal~ Staying Connected With Our Kids
A couple of years ago, my then eight year old daughter left a “love note” on my pillow. I still have it. I loved that she would think to do something so sweet. It dawned on me that I could start a journal with her. Just her. No one else would ever get to see it, or hear its contents. For me, I have always kept a journal, and I find it much easier to share things that I wouldn’t feel comfortable saying out loud. The very next day I bought a notebook just for us.
Let me tell you, it has worked wonders! I have gotten to hear some of her fears, crushes, embarrassing moments and just some sappy love notes. Some of the entries are deep and emotional, while others are funny and make me laugh. I love that I can encourage her, express my feelings for her, share thoughts on life with her. We don’t write in it daily, but it makes it all the more special when one of us finds this treasure under our pillow at night time.
My daughter is a talker, so I was surprised how much she actually wasn’t sharing because she was too embarrassed to express some things out loud. Which got me thinking… Her brother is a very introverted child. Doesn’t like to share much at all. He talks to us, but when anything “deep” comes up he gets uncomfortable and tends to clam up. How much was I missing from him that he was too afraid to express? At the time I started journaling with my daughter, he was too young to write or read., but as soon as he was in 2nd grade, I started one with him as well. Same stipulations; for our eyes only. The difference in their journals is pretty funny. Pages are written between the girls, while we have barely passed 2 pages in my son’s. It hasn’t worked yet for him, but I keep it going hoping that the simple “I love you Mom” notes he leaves me will soon give way to longer entries. Maybe even get some real depth in them. However, whether they do or not, he knows that the book is there, that he can open it at any time a send me a note. He knows that it is a non judgmental way to express his feelings.
The point of the journal is to connect with our kids. Sometimes I don’t get it back for a month or longer, but I can still sneak into their room and borrow it to write them another note. That way they get a note. I plan on keeping them all in a safe place as we fill them up. I look forward to seeing the penmanship change, the spelling improve and the entries grow in length. But more than that, I look forward to them reading them as an adult and feeling how much I love them.
This experience has taught me so much about being a Mommy. I really feel it has strengthened my bond with my kids. Just a simple way to take a minute from our super busy lives and share a memory or a thought with my kids.
You should find an inexpensive notebook and give it a try. It doesn’t have to be a fancy journal, my son and I share a composition book (I couldn’t find anything that wasn’t too girly) and it works well. Even if you aren’t a fan of keeping a journal, this will change your mind! It is such a simple way to share our love with someone we care about.