One way to be involved with your kids is to become involved with an
activity they are passionate about.  This doesn’t mean that you
actually do the activity with them (although you could).  What I’m
talking about in this post is volunteering with an organization your
child is a part of. 

This comment connects directly with a book discussion group I’ve been
part of at my church.  We are working through a book called The
Blessing, by Gary Smalley and John Trent.
In short, the book says that we give young adults the best chance of
flying securely on their own if we bless them while they’re growing up.

Blessings come in many forms.  Towards the end of the book, you’ll
find a list of blessings adult children recalled and appreciated.  Two I
remember clearly are “attending all my games” (meets, recitals, shows,
etc.), and “being involved with my activities.” 

I admit, I was somewhat reluctant to join the board of my daughter’s
swim team.  How much time would it take, and how could I possibly
add another thing to my calendar? 

I merged in slowly, simply attending a few board meetings to listen in. 
I volunteered to help maintain the team bulletin boards at the
community pools.  Then I realized how much I enjoyed the company of
these people working together to make our small team click.  I
volunteered to be the board secretary, and now I’m also helping
update team records and co-organizing a swim meet. It’s all very
interesting work.

I asked Amy what she thought of my being on the board, and she
emphatically said “Awesome.”  I asked her why, and she said (direct
quote) “Because you’re more involved with my swim team.”

Involvement. In my post on January 14 
I mentioned the television drama “Everwood,” in which a now single dad is having
trouble relating to his 15-year-old son.  One of the son’s bitter
resentments against dad is that when dad was a famous neurosurgeon
he missed all of his son’s milestone events such as being a lead in the
school play and sixth-grade graduation.  Ouch.

I think dads need to hear that their involvement and interest counts
every bit as much as mom’s.  Or, if you’re a working mom, take it to
heart that a little balance, where you make time to express an interest
in how your child is developing, could make the difference between a
blessing and unintentional indifference. 

The love and commitment of one parent is great, but it doesn’t make
up for the seeming lack of commitment on the part of the other parent.
If you’re both available, your kids need blessings all around.

Mama J (Diane Fromme) is a writer, parent, and stepparent located in
Northern Colorado.  For more information on her book,
Stepparenting the Grieving Child, go to

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