When I told my twin sister, Monique, that Joshua’s love language is quality time, she empathized with me. She has one child who also has shown that his love language is quality time and she knows how overwhelming it can be.
My son always checks if I am around. He will start whining asking “where is mommy?”. Then on the second time he asks and does not see me or hear my voice he would start that crying sound. I have to make him hear me say, “I’m here.” When he finally sees me his crying face changes and he would laugh and smile with relief.
That’s pretty much a picture of my life now. When I have schedules outside the house and if it seems I will be spending about 4 hours away from the house, it means I have to take my kids with me. Anna needs me because I chose to breastfeed her. Josh on the other hand goes because he wants to be with me. He is my Mr. Quality-time guy.
Even my bathroom breaks are not my me-time anymore! I get invaded doing my thing on the toilet or have the shower curtains checked while I bathe. I can’t have locked doors because Joshua will either cry or find a way to open it.
It is serious business for my toddler to know where mommy is. I have learned to let my guards down, and to ease up. My child wants to access me all the time and it makes him feel secure if he knows mom is just there.
Each child is unique and their love tanks are filled according to the love they want to receive. At 2 years and 8 months, I am figuring out that Josh feels loved if we spend time together. In fact, at times I get busy, he will ask me to take a walk with him. Just the two of us to talk and hold hands and look at the sky. Or he would ask if he can sleep, but actually all he wants is me to stay beside him on his bed to look at each other, pinch each other’s face and laugh. He won’t sleep at all. He just wants me to “date” him on a one on one.
It’s sweet and cute. But at times his demand of quality time can also be so overwhelming and sometimes annoying. But as a parent my job is to secure my child with love and to teach him in the way he should go. So that means, I must make time to spend quality time with him. Dad also does his share of “dating” Joshua and playing with him.
We as parents should know our child and love them the way they feel loved and want to receive love. Learn more about the love languages of your child in the book, 5 Love Languages of Children by Gary Chapman. It’s a good book to help us parents become more intentional with our children.