What are Bonding Moments?
By Brenda Hyde
Seeds of Knowledge
We've all read about the different types of bonding: mother and baby, fathers and sons, mothers and daughters and so on. There is even controversy surrounding types of bonding! Maybe it's just not that complicated. I think bonding is finding that special activity that is unique to you and your child. Something that creates memories that will always be with them, and make them smile. For my two boys and I, it's something a little different and it's just between us. Their Dad gives us odd looks while it's going on. We just laugh. We sit together, the three of us, with Mom in the middle, and we watch cooking shows. That's right. Cooking. We have been doing this since they were too young to even know what was actually going on. I suppose it was my little "adult" break when they were younger.
I kept waiting for them to tire of this activity as they got older but they are now 5 and 6 and ask ME to find a cooking show for us to watch! We like to watch the Food Network, and one day as we watched Martha bake cookies, the boys questioned her. "Hey, what kind of cookie cutters is she using?", as if she might not be doing it correctly. Boys after my own heart. Then we watched a special on Ball Park food. The hotdog part of the show was their favorite, until they got to the desserts. They apparently take after me on that one! As I sat there between them and we were all laughing, I realized that the three of us would always remember these times. Maybe when I am a Grandma we will sit and watch cooking shows with their babies, all smashed together on a couch, their wives giving us odd looks, wondering how we started this tradition. Best of all, even when I am not with them, hopefully they will think of me every time they watch a cooking show and smile at the memories.
I think it's important that we remember that "bonding" takes all shapes and forms. There is no set formula for connecting with your children. Don't assume because they are boys that they might not enjoy "Mom" activities, just as Dad's should be open to their daughters enjoying "Dad" things. Memories are treasured during a person's lifetime because of the emotions behind the moment. We have to be sensitive to the fact that a walk in the woods, or a special trip to the store, or even a quiet afternoon reading together could be a memory that will be treasured forever. It's not always the big, flashy moments that stick with a child. After all, how many Moms remember that first tiny, but beautiful, smile from our child? It was a flash of a moment in our life, but one we will always treasure.
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