Busy-ness trap: catch your bus or hug your children?

This morning was one of those priority awareness days. I usually take our kids to school so Gina can get to work early (and return home a little earlier) but she and the kids are home sick today so I thought I’d make a run for an earlier train so I can finish work a little earlier and get back to help with the kids.

I was running a little later than I hoped but made it out the door and was heading for the bus stop to take the bus to the train station and catch that earlier train. I said goodbye to our kids as I was rushing out. They were tidying up and looking out of windows but they heard me. My wife called me when I was about half a block up the road to ask me if I was nearby because the kids wanted to give me a hug.

There were a few profanities on my side (nothing the kids heard, I hope) and I ran back, gave them hugs and rushed back out and up the road to the bus stop. I saw the bus pulling up to the stop street (it was about 10 minutes early, or late depending on which one it was) when I was about 100 meters away and started running. It pulled away when I was about 20 meters away and there wasn’t enough traffic to slow it so I could catch up.

I may have been able to catch that earlier train if I made that bus and, as I walked to the station, I realized this is one of those busy-ness traps: do you take a few extra minutes to hug your kids or do you forgo that so you can catch that bus and get to work a little earlier?

It’s a rhetorical question, for the most part, because taking a few extra minutes to hug your kids and show them they are more important than the chance of catching an earlier bus is the better thing to do. Kids don’t always receive the attention they deserve when we are rushing around creating better lives for them and it sometimes seems like a fair sacrifice to make. I wonder how often it is, though?


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