Emerson was bored last Friday. I could see it all over his face. And I sort of felt sorry for the little fellow.
"Em, what would you like to do this afternoon?", I asked.
He thought for a minute and responded, "Can we go roller skating?"
"Sure," I replied. "Go get ready and see if your sisters want to come along too."
Twenty minutes later, two of my daughters, Emerson, and I were on our way to Skate Station, which is a neat place here in our town of Sumter. Everyone was excited and looking forward to a fun time. We pulled into the parking lot, paid our way, put on our skates, and jumped into the thick of the action.
For an hour and twenty minutes we skated laps. The lights were cool and the music was fun, top-40 tunes that we knew really well. Each of us had a ball!
Finally, we all got tired. So we slid off our skates, got back our regular shoes, and headed on out the door. Smiles were on every face, and it was obvious a good time was had by all.
I was tempted to go and just sit while they skated. My reason for that was I had not skated in over 30 years, and I really didn't want to fall and break a bone. Furthermore, I was thinking I may look a little ridiculous as a 44 year old man out there on roller skates.
But then this thought went through my mind: "I need to relax and have more fun with my kids. Even if I'm not that good at skating, and even if it's a bit of a risk, they're worth it."
I guess we dads at times can get so wrapped up in things like paying bills, completing projects, and trying to relax quietly by ourselves, that we may not spend enough fun time with our sons and daughters. When I think about this, I realize it's important for us to make memories with our kids that will stick in their minds for the rest of their lives. They need to see us smile, hear us laugh, and sense us having a good time with them.
Going to Skate Station was good for the kids and me. We bonded a little closer. I got to hold hands with both of my daughters at different times as we skated laps. That was special to me! And I got to laugh and cut up with Emerson some too. But the best part of it all was that I got to reinforce in their minds that I truly do love them. And that made it all worth while!
May we dads and moms make time to show our kids that they mean the world to us. We don't have to go skating to do that. There are many different ways we can bond with them. But the important thing is we invest time in their young lives and have a little fun with them. That'll go a long, long way with them, and they will always remember it.