why our kids want our attention, not just “uh-huh…that’s nice.”

Today, my daughter sent me a video that she made. This has become her new thing – editing videos and editing pictures and sharing them on Instagram. I think she’s great at it and she loves making them. We were chatting about her newest edit and then out of the blue she wrote this:

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For real. She asked me to write about this on this site because she truly knows how important it is for their hearts – the kids we love – to be heard. And then this happened:

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My friends, it made me cry. She wrote an entire post. Beginning, end, point and strong call to action of what needed to be said – what we all need to hear – to be reminded of as we scurry through the busy of motherhood. Because sometimes, well, sometimes it’s easy to not see the world from their eyes, but rather our own.

Read. This is her post (written by her from my perspective) for all of us.

Today my youngest daughter shared a video with me, it wasn’t just a YouTube video – it was special. My daughter made this video edit and wanted to share it with me and then she told me I could put it on my blog.  I knew then, that she was proud of it and wanted everyone to see.

But it was what she said that made me realize I wasn’t seeing the most important part.

She said “mom you should write a post about your children and their hidden talents you find.”

It was in that moment I realized maybe I wasn’t paying enough attention as I had almost missed my daughter’s video and it was something special she wanted to share with me. But it was even more that I realized how even with children little things are very important

Now whenever my children show me things I put down the computer or the cellphone and see what they want to show me, because I know that children want you to be proud of them.

So take the extra moment today and watch your children, when they show you something don’t immediately say wow nice but rather tell them the truth that you are proud of them and their talents.

Today this mom learned to take a little more time to watch my children and I hope you do too. Because in real life little things can matter more than big things depending how you react to them. I knew my daughter found joy showing me her talent and I found joy realizing all the little moments I missed but can now see.

Grace Martin (14)”


Out of the mouths of our little ones, right? She wants you to know what mattered to her and for me to share it. Why? Because she is right there, right now, wanting my attention. Real attention.

Not the uh-huhs and oh that’s nice and in a minutes that are so easy to mutter. But a real investment in her.

It isn’t about the big stuff. Sometimes, as I learned again, it’s about not just mumbling that’s great, but it’s rather really taking a moment to share in their joys. To really listen and not partially listen. To invest in them.

My favorite part? It’s in the now seeing part.

You have an opportunity today to see.

Tell them you’re proud of them – for who they are right now.

It really matters.


By the way, here is the video edit that my daughter Grace made. She told me that she loves doing video edits because they just make her happy. Take that to heart too – the finding of what one loves to do simply because it brings joy. She wants that for you too. (made by Grace Martin – instagram -> https://www.instagram.com/gmw_lover_/ )



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15 Responses to “why our kids want our attention, not just “uh-huh…that’s nice.””

  1. November 23, 2015

    Jane H. Reply

    So much wisdom from Grace….tell her thank you. She is a beautiful girl…inside and out.

  2. November 23, 2015

    Shawn Ann Reply

    Awesome post Grace! I don’t think most adults could have written they post better. My boys are always showing me their Lego creations or drawings and I always try to save them all or at least display them for a while to show them how much I love their drawings.

    Cute video, want to do some for me?

    • November 23, 2015

      Rachel Marie Martin Reply

      That was so so kind. Thank you. I am so grateful for you taking time to encourage her and the beautiful words.


  3. November 23, 2015

    Tara Reply

    As a teen I remember clearly having my mother ask me daily how school was, etc. She complained that I never shared with her anymore. But each time I approached her with an important question, conversation, or to show her something important to me, she seemed too busy. Granted, she ran a busy household and had three kids. I was the oldest and was pretty chatty. But when I heard her absentminded “mm hmmm” or “that’s nice”, I knew immediately that she wasn’t present and wasn’t paying attention to me. I shut down inside and felt very disconnected from her. Those years brought a lot of miscommunication, and thankfully years later we are close and now my children are also close with her. But still, to this day, I don’t really feel “heard” or appreciated for being me. I think it is just an old wound that has yet to completely heal. I am so glad you heard your daughter’s message. She wrote this blog beautifully. I try daily to be present with my small children now for the same reason your daughter spoke about, and sometimes fail. I understand my mother a lot more now and realize why she was distracted. But it doesn’t take away from the fact that she missed out on some pretty great connection time. I don’t want to miss out on that with my children. Thank you to your daughter for reminding me today!

    • November 24, 2015

      Rachel Marie Martin Reply

      Thank you, Tara, for sharing your story with me (and others). I appreciate your kindness and encouragement.

      with joy.


  4. November 23, 2015

    Mary Reply

    Grace is beautiful inside and out and what wisdom she imparts. How awesome she felt it important enough to speak up and help make parents (and grandparents) aware of the importance of listening, really listening – and taking real honest-to-goodness pride in their children’s talents and gifts.

  5. November 23, 2015

    Nic Reply

    Awesome post Rachel! You’ve opened my eyes to what is really going on. You see, I am guilty of doing “yes, that’s very nice” & “really?”. Life just gets too overwhelming at times. I’m a single mother 3/4 of a year due to my husband working overseas so my responsibilities are huge that most of the time I take it just day by day. I am not justifying myself, merely telling what a horrid mom I can be at times. I love my daughter and I’m afraid I don’t show enough of the love to her. I am putting attention to her on top of my list. Thank you for bringing it to my attention. You are an awesome person and an awesome mom. Never forget that

  6. November 24, 2015

    Joy Williams Reply

    Your daughter is wise and talented beyond her years. I am guilty of my preoccupation getting in the way of communicating with my children far too frequently. Thank you to her and you for bringing it to my attention and for providing a simple remedy. Sometimes I feel that as we home school that just being there is enough and it really isn’t. Thanks once again.

  7. November 24, 2015

    Dede Wright Reply

    I absolutely love this! As a mom of 6 I think I do this all to often. I needed this, thank you Grace and thank you Rachel!

  8. November 25, 2015

    Annette Reply

    And Grace. Thank you for this wonderful post. You just have this weary single
    Mom another great tool to remember as I listen to my children as do our daily chores. At times it’s more important to stop what I’m doing and rest in the joy of my kids. Thank you!

  9. November 25, 2015

    Nicole Reply

    Your daughter is an old soul. .. a beautiful old soul. I can only hope that some adults in the world could grow to become half as brilliant. Thank her, from me, for this post and for sharing her talents with the world. Happy Thanksgiving!

  10. November 28, 2015

    Adelina Priddis Reply

    I’ve had this pulled up on my phone to read for days now…and finally read it while sitting at the desktop. It is important! I see the difference in my kids when I pay better attention to them.
    Your daughter is very talented. I love her video.

  11. December 1, 2015

    Elena Reply

    Time is running so fast and kids are adults in a short time. Your daughter is wise, very wise. Quality time spent with kids are the best memories ever.

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