By making a difference in their lives

 My daughter is sleeping on the couch a few feet away from me. 

She hasn’t been feeling well and we just finished watching Marmaduke together. As soon as the movie ended, her eyes closed.

As I look at her–the peaceful expression on her face, her arms curled around a blanket, the fact that she’s so tall now she almost takes up the whole length of the couch–I smile.

Why did I hesitate when she asked me to sit with her?

Why was my first reaction that I didn’t have time to watch a movie in the middle of the day?

I have to be honest. When I told her yes and we started the movie, my thoughts wandered…

I should be working on my article that’s due Friday.

I should be writing that query for my manuscript.

I should…

Why does it sometimes take these quiet, still moments for me to realize that the best thing I could be doing is just being with my kids?

Part of it is the way I’m wired. It’s not easy for me to sit still and not be productive. I wish I was better at taking time to relax.

But part of it is the dreams…

I’ve got dreams on fire in my heart and I want to do more with them.

I want to reach out to others through my words and books.

I want to make a difference in the world.

Sometimes as a mom, I get impatient, wishing I had more time to focus on those dreams and help them happen.

And then I have a moment like today…

sitting here, looking at my daughter who is quickly approaching the teenage years

and I realize that my dreams are happening, 

right now.

Every life experience is building, one upon the other, to make me the person–the mom and the writer–I am meant to be.

And suddenly I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that I would not be able to put my whole heart into any dream if I didn’t first feel like I was putting my whole heart into my kids.

And by taking time with them–whether it’s watching a movie in the middle of the day or not–I am making a difference in the world,

by making a difference in their lives. 

Sometimes, I just need to be reminded of that.  :)


  1. Genny, You are so right! When my hubby first became ill several years ago I was 'busy' making a difference in 'the church'. I never seemed to have time to be with hubby because the church was always calling for my attention. In this season, tomorrow is day 40 of his hospitalization, I have realized that 'being' with him IS making a difference. Am I am happy to say that there has not been 1 day out of 40 that I haven't spent many hours just sitting next to him praying and 'being' with him. Tomorrow he comes home for a very long recovery period and you bet I will be making a difference for him AND making a difference in the world at the same time:) Happy you spent time with your girl today!! Memories for a lifetime!

  2. Thank you for this post. I've been so busy lately, I am afraid I've pushed my kids aside some days. I am going to make more of an effort to lay down my stuff and focus more on what's most important. We only have them for a short time!

  3. Thank you for this post. I've been so busy lately, I am afraid I've pushed my kids aside some days. I am going to make more of an effort to lay down my stuff and focus more on what's most important. We only have them for a short time!

  4. I love this post. There is so much of me in your words. Sounds like I was watching my 8 year old hula hoop and jump rope outside while you were watching a movie. I had read some words last week about service to my children and that is why I have been working so hard to answer their call. It was a great week responding to their needs.

  5. I so need to be reminded of it too. I very much relate to this post – thanks for writing it and for sitting and watching Marmaduke!

  6. Thank you for this post – on the days when I am feeling so very much as if there is not a moment to be had for myself, I do feel as you describe so very well. You are so right, these years are precious and fleeting and we have to make the most of them and spending time with my daughter really is the most important thing. But there needs to be balance too, time in which to remember who we are, not just Mommy or Daddy, time in which to chase at least some of those dreams

  7. This is a great reminder! I have a hard time just sitting down because there's so much to do. When I take the time to do so, I'm so glad. I have to treasure these moments with my kids!

  8. Hi, I am following you via Google Friend Connect. Nice Blog! hank for the follow!

  9. Genny, thank you for this post. You have a way with telling a moving story with a simple snippet of your day…and the thoughts and feelings that surround it. Thank you for being real.

  10. Oh my gosh, Genny you are so right. It seems there is always something else going on that I need to get done that seems more important. I sat down with my oldest on the couch the other day and we just watched a movie, at his begging me for over an hour. He fell asleep with his head in my lap and me stroking his hair. I LOVED IT! And like you I thought about all the things I could be doing. But I am so glad that I gave in. I hope the next time the boys ask me to do something, I remember your story and how I felt "hanging out" and I don't hesitate!

  11. This post really hit me. Sometimes I forget the most important thing I am working for in my life is already under my nose. It amazes me how a post can touch so many people. Thank you! I have included your blog and this post in my Thursday's Featured Blog. The link is hope you have an exceptional day!

Comments are closed.