The other day, I was busy writing an article when I heard the familiar ding of the appointment reminder for my online calendar program. I tried to think about what meeting or phone call I had scheduled, but came up blank. But then I looked at the reminder message on my computer screen and began to laugh.
When Trevor had used my computer the night before, he had apparently scheduled an appointment for me that said “Play with Trevor.” He even invited “Mommy” and “Trevor” to the very important meeting that he had marked “Urgent.” He must not have realized that he had set the calendar item for 11:45 a.m. on a Thursday when he would be sitting in his desk at school working on math problems. But nonetheless, his reminder made me pause from my day and think.
I schedule our family’s dentist appointments months in advance. I block out time on my calendar to interview people for work. And I plan out date nights with my husband at least several days ahead of time. While I spend plenty of time hanging out with my kids, I often tend to fit actually sitting down and playing with them around my other obligations. So I decided to take a page from 9-year-old son’s playbook and block out time on my calendar to shut down my email, turn off my cell phone and have a date with my kids. And this time, the appointment won’t be scheduled in the middle of the school day.