“These are the times that try men’s souls.” Thomas Paine, 1776
Why is it always ‘men’s souls’ that are tried? What about the women? We are the ones at home with the kids during the long summer days, left to come up with the creative bag of tricks to try to entertain kids and ‘keep them busy.’ It’s exhausting! They are relentless! And the most agonizing words you hear from kids, other than “there’s nothing to eat in this house,” are the words they fire at you: “I’m bored.”
This is not a statement really, as much as an accusation that you are not doing a good job as head of their personal entertainment committee. And you didn’t even sign up for the job. “These are the times that try women’s souls.” Dawn Hirn, 2016
When you find yourself ready to pull out your hair, save those luscious locks, take a deep breath and possibly a sip of wine, and take a look at our website Ourbackpack.com. Even though we’ve been through the absolute worst any parent can go through, we still find ourselves losing our patience with our kids.
I just came upon the interview we gave to a film production team who was preparing to tell our story on television, and found some valuable take-aways. Always nice to hear something you said that makes you proud. (Way too often, I cringe at the things I’ve said.)
Ron shared these words with the camera: “Try to be patient with your kids. I don’t have the opportunity anymore to do that with Ryan. If you make it all about obligation with your kids, it will drive them away. Their peers don’t do that.”
Ron and I decided to commit to a total immersion adventure plan with our boys. I saw myself tell the film crew: “Grief is something that never goes away.” “If you don’t make a conscious effort to spend quality time with them (your kids) it’s not going to happen. I mean you’ve got to do it now!” And I saw myself snap my fingers in front of the camera: “You don’t really have much time with anybody. They can be taken from you in a snap!”
Next time summer boredom gets the best of you, before you pull your hair out or say something you will regret, snap your fingers.