Building a Better Family, One Step at a Time

Posted by in Motherhood Project, Prose, Ten Minutes, Writing

Today I took my daughters to the Y. We stumbled through a Zumba class, then BOSU, then swimming or treadmills… it was tiring, but rewarding, nonetheless. It was my first time exercising at the Y, theirs too… and, at first, I didn’t think much of it. But sitting here now, reflecting, I’ve  realized how important these experiences may be for them… for us. We all want this perfect ideal family. We want family meetings and vacations; home-cooked meals and holidays. I want to rarely have to yell (rather than daily), I want home videos, family gardens, BBQs with close friends and bike rides together on weekends. Yes, I know, I have high, rather idyllic, aspirations. But I don’t think any of these are impossible. What I do think is that they are things that will have to be built gradually.

The instant overnight family is not going to happen.

So, while the exercise/dance class didn’t seem like a big deal at the time, I’m realizing that what we just did is huge. Its a step in the right direction. A direction we’ve been talking about for five years, a direction we’ve been working toward, but not without a lot of beating our heads against the wall and dragging of feet. What did this one class really do for us? Got us out of the house, allowed us to burn some energy/get exercise, spend time together as a family, de-stress,  build healthy habits, broaden our social sphere, fulfill our commitments, establish a routine, try something new, get out of our comfort zones… the list goes on and on.

Sure, its just one class… but it was a monumental first step for our family. A step in the right direction. Stress is one of the greatest hindrances to our family’s growth and success. Lack of motivation would be next on that list. We all have high aspirations (not just me), and we are all frustrated at times with our failure to achieve and our lack of motivation to even try. So I’m really happy about this little visit to the Y. It feels good to be spending time with the family, outside the house, doing something healthy and beneficial.  It’s a great start for us and, inshaAllah, it will be one more step toward building a happier, healthier, more supportive family. The family we all aspire to.

If you’ve never considered trying some exercise, athletic or dance classes WITH your kids, I urge you to give it a try. It’s a great opportunity to bond, struggle and laugh together, build healthy habits and try something new. The YMCA is a great resource, with financial aid if you’re worried about the cost, and its a place where you’ll all be on level playing field. Not so much the parent teaching the child, but the whole family learning together… and that’s awesome.

That’s my ten minutes for today. #tenminutes
What about yours?

Part of the Ten Minutes series… A challenge to write for ten minutes everyday, no matter what. Learn more… Join the movement!