0:00:02 – Speaker 1
Welcome to the nextTalk podcast, where we share real stories and practical advice for parenting the digital world.
0:00:09 – Speaker 2
We’re your hosts, Mandy and Kim. Mandy is an award-winning author and the founder of nextTalk, and I’m the director of nextTalk, a nonprofit organization created to strengthen families through open communication. You can check out all of our resources at nextTalk.org.
0:00:24 – Speaker 1
We’re your wives, moms and friends, tackling culturally relevant topics from a Christian perspective. We’re sharing what we’ve learned and where we failed. We’re so glad you’re here for this conversation.
0:00:38 – Speaker 2
So today usually it’s Mandy and I and we love doing the podcast, but we also love having guests on the show. We know my husband’s been on, mandy’s daughter has been on and today I feel super special because I get to have on one of our newest employees and someone a lot of you have prayed for and asked about, and you’ve already seen the gift that she is to nextTalk. She is our social media manager, darby Debesque. Welcome to the show girl.
0:01:09 – Speaker 3
Hi, thanks for having me. I’m honored to be here. That’s so nice. What a nice intro. Thank you.
0:01:15 – Speaker 2
Well, I mean, the nextTalk community is pretty close and they knew that it was a big deal to invite someone into our community to be a part of our team. And so you are an answer to prayer, for sure, for sure.
0:01:30 – Speaker 3
I feel like chosen, you know, Like it was more than just like a job application.
0:01:35 – Speaker 2
It’s like selection you know, yes, very honored, that’s a great way to put it for sure. Let me just share the idea behind the show and then I want you to tell us a little bit about yourself. You know, on this nextTalk journey and as we’re creating these relationships with our kids in a safe place and tackling these really big subjects, sometimes it can get overwhelming. I mean, i’m just going to be honest. I have literally ran into women in the street or at a game and they burst into tears because sometimes it’s just a lot. It’s just a lot being a parent anyway, but in this day and age, with all that our kids are facing, it can feel overwhelming and hard, just like straight up hard.
And all the things I remember dreaming about when I was pregnant, like all the sweet memories and ideas of being a mom, those are just kind of like a special reminder that parenting is also fun and sweet and special, and that’s what I want to focus on today. It’s just some of those little things that are just as important as the hard conversations that sometimes can get brushed aside. And you and I were chatting about this at our nextTalk Christmas party and I thought I think the other moms and dads would like to hear this. So before we jump into some like you had three ideas that I thought were great. Will our listeners a little bit about you.
0:02:59 – Speaker 3
Oh, i’d love to. Okay, so I’m not a parent. I feel like I have to give that. I don’t know if that affects my credibility or whatever, but we’ll let it fly this time.
Okay, thank you so much, but I am. I’m one of five kids, so I I’m the second oldest and there’s a big age gap between all this. So my oldest sister is 32 and my youngest brother is 16. So there’s kids all spread out through there And we have a super close family. My parents are awesome And we’re all really close And that has totally like my family relationships and those dynamics have totally impacted the like every other area of my life, right Like the way that I engage with other relationships or friendships or at work, or just like the stability that I got from my family is priceless. You know, especially for me, the older I get and the more people I meet and the more interesting family dynamics I know about. I’m so grateful for my family and my parents in particular. So I love this conversation because I think what my parents did super well is balancing the hard and the fun. They didn’t lean too far one side or the other, and so, yeah, i’m excited to talk about that a little bit because I think that’s so important.
0:04:11 – Speaker 2
Let’s make it fun, why not? Well, it’s intriguing for those of us who are parents right now because we’re always wondering, like, when I see flourishing young adults, i always ask them It may be annoying, quite frankly, but I always ask them as soon as I get to know them a little bit like tell me what you think your parents did well or what’s something that you hope to do when you’re a parent. Because it is a little bit like this dream that you want your kids to do well And you do everything that you know to do and you pray and ask the Holy Spirit to guide your conversations and your choices. And when you see it, when you see kids doing well, it’s like, yes, how do they do it? Give me the playbook. So you had some really great ideas that I just want to share with our listeners, so maybe tell us start with number one What’s one thing you think?
it’s really important for parents to consider.
0:05:02 – Speaker 3
Yes, okay. So when I was thinking about this, one thing that jumped into mind that might feel a little random is I think my parents did a great job of orchestrating one-on-one time between different sibling combinations or sibling and a parent. Being in a big family especially, i feel like it’s hard to get one-on-one uninterrupted time with anybody right, especially if you have little kids around or there’s just so much going on at all times, like the chaos. So my parents did a great job of creating space and opportunities for just me and my dad to go run an errand. It could be super simple, like we just had to go to Walmart to go grab something, or creating space for just me and my little brother to be, you know, unloading the dishwasher together or whatever.
And some of those things were probably for efficiency sake, but I have so many great memories of, just like you know, those car rides with your big sister. You’re listening to Rihanna. It’s just fun. That’s the vibe that I’m thinking. I love it so much. So my parents did a great job of just creating space for that and encouraging that, which I don’t know that people think about. I don’t know, i don’t think I would think about that as a parent, but they did a great job of that.
0:06:14 – Speaker 2
Okay. So what I love about that is I know when I was raising my kids, not like that was a long time ago. I am raising my kids.
Hopefully back in the day when they were little, that was kind of like a big thing like dating your kids, like having one on one days. But I love that you said they created space for you and another sibling to connect. And having three kids, i can really see the value of that because they need time to form their own little bonds, not it always being just the kids together One on one.
I love that idea because I bet you that that transforms your relationship and kind of changes what it’s like as your adults? Oh for sure.
0:06:54 – Speaker 3
And you have to be taught how to do that right, like you have to be taught how to have good relationships, and so when you’re, when you’re given the opportunity to practice that one on one in a safe place like your family, with your siblings, i think that is super helpful in a family context And then it helps you practice to be ready for other relationships with other friends or other people, which is super cool, i know, because there was an age gap kind of between all my siblings, like my older sister could drive while my youngest brother was like a baby. So my mom was super great about Um she I’m sure she bribed my big sister, but she would. She would pay for like sibling dates for us. So we’d get a five dollar bill, we’d go get frozen yogurt or go Starbucks, like some of those kind of treats that are silly, but my mom funded those a lot.
0:07:44 – Speaker 1
I love that Awesome.
0:07:46 – Speaker 3
It didn’t have to be elaborate or expensive, just to get out of the house, like go to snack, go to go get happy hour, like just go do it, and which I love. I thought that was really helpful thing that she did. I’m so grateful for it now.
0:07:59 – Speaker 2
Those organic conversations that wouldn’t happen at home, with everybody and the chaos and the big group getting to know your sibling, you know, outside of the context of family, just you guys, two kiddos. I think is brilliant. Your mom is brilliant. Yes, tell her I said so, she is.
0:08:16 – Speaker 3
You should have her on the podcast.
0:08:18 – Speaker 2
Actually I’m going to go and call her. Okay, you’re done. Where’s your mom Now? I’m totally okay, bye, okay. So I love that tip. I love it so much. What’s another one? Share another one with us.
0:08:30 – Speaker 3
Okay, Okay, So big one. So this is probably obvious. But meals together are a really big deal And all families I feel like are busy. I mean busy, busy, busy between the activities and school and work and practices and games and lessons, Like the list goes on right. Like I remember my big family whiteboard calendar and it was full, Like it was really everything right, But my parents did really well and it wasn’t every day or anything like that, But frequently a couple of times a week we would sit down and eat together And sometimes that was 15 minutes.
Everyone’s pouring their own bowl of cereal and we’re just all going to sit at the table and eat. But that opportunity to be all together and have a focused time where there’s like one focused goal of just eating a meal together before we move on to the next thing, I love that. I don’t see that. I feel like a lot right now And I miss that in my own home, Like I don’t live at home anymore And that’s something that I miss is like, okay, at least once or twice a week we have a set time, we’re eating together, we’re hanging out and having that intentional time as a family. I think that’s like that’s easy, right, You have to eat. You might as well eat together when you can, right? I don’t know.
0:09:46 – Speaker 2
Well, it’s funny that you said it seems obvious. And yes, i think for most of us we’re like, yes, family dinner. But the other day I was at a basketball game and this mom was lamenting the calendar that you’re talking about that we all have, with 5,000 directions we’re going. And she said should I just give up the dream of the family meal Because I’m trying to get everybody get dinner like hot, at the right time when this kid’s coming in and this kid’s about to go and I’m trying to make it all work And it just seems like so much stress And do they really even care? And what you said speaks to that so beautifully is that it could be serial.
It’s not the food and as moms we go down that into that trap of like. We got to have, you know, the protein, the vegetable, yeah, the low glycemic carbohydrate and you know, yes, and the dessert. And that trap of like it’s got to look a certain way And it’s got to be at this time or for this length that we’re sitting at the table or the conversation needs to be deep. You know we can’t just right silly and what. When you saying that and that you miss it. What I’m hearing is It’s about the gathering, it’s about the being face-to-face, it’s about just coming together, no matter if it’s messy or what it looks like, or the meal is Cereal or a pop tart like. That’s not the point, and it mattered so much to you that now that you’re gone, you even miss it, which is like totally ah.
0:11:15 – Speaker 3
I do, i like force my roommate sometimes. I’ll text them in the morning and go. We’re doing sit-down dinner tonight, so you know what we’re doing.
I hope they like it. No, it’s funny because there’s a difference between the formality of It’s a three course dinner and we’re sitting down at this set time and we have to make like set the table and whatever. That is unachievable day to day or even once a week or whatever for most families, and so I think it makes a lot of sense to just Play into the routines you already have and just Elevate them a little. Like you’re already gonna eat, you already are gonna eat. So, as much as you know, if you pick a day a week, just make it a focused Time. We’re going to eat the leftovers, we’re just gonna sit at the table and we’re sitting a timer for 20 minutes. We’re gonna sit together. Like that to me feels much more Possible and not as out of reach as the formal Like sit down dinner. I don’t know.
0:12:11 – Speaker 2
Yeah, no for sure. And hearing it from you Because it’s different hearing it from another. You know 40 year old mom Who am I kidding? I’m 44. It’s different hearing it from you. Know another young, 40, grown like me, yes, then, like someone who’s just launched and can say, like it was okay that it was informal, it still was important to me, like that makes my heart feel like it’s achievable and I can do it again, like it’s something I can do totally Do.
0:12:39 – Speaker 3
You do that now. Cam like what is that like a priority for y’all Or what is that like for you guys, week to week or month? of author.
0:12:46 – Speaker 2
Yeah, so Sundays is our day to kind of be like okay, what does the week look like And what nights are we gonna have dinner together? and it’s usually two nights a week that we can figure out that everybody will be home at the same time and And sometimes it’s cereal, Sometimes it’s leftovers. Actually one night a week, at Thursday’s, is leftover night, and sometimes it’s like I’m losing my mind. Get out the frozen pizza, charles, right, and so it goes like that. And then date night, like we try to do the date night once a week, which often looks like let’s just go sit in the car and Circle the block. But it’s gonna happen because I need to see you and talk to you about more than a schedule.
I Speak completely transparently when I say I was that mom and Mandy teases me all the time like I made my baby food and I thought everything was gonna be perfect and I was gonna have the three course meal and I Had to let that go because the shame and the guilt and the letdown that kept happening. I realized it was not achievable and it was hurting my family more than helping them. So Just roll with it is my new way to roll with it.
0:13:49 – Speaker 3
I love that you got it. I would think, like, as a parent, you’d have to get, like you have to zoom out a little bit and go eating together. There’s not the goal. like the goal is quality time together, like focused quality time, and this is just a way to get there. It’s not the thing. like it’s not, we’re not eating together, just you to eat together and look cute and pinteresty or whatever It’s. it’s because it’s a way to have like focused time together, and so maybe that takes some of the pressure off. It’s like, and maybe it’s not even eating together, maybe it’s you, you know, do coffee in the morning. Oh well, not if you have little kids. That was a stupid thing to say, but you know what I mean. Like maybe something else where you’re just sitting around the table you’re doing card games. I don’t know. It’s just that intentionality piece. I think that’s most important.
0:14:31 – Speaker 2
You are spot on This morning. I’ll tell you what that looked like. You know, it wasn’t silly to say, it was not stupid to say coffee This morning. I was in the bathroom and I was like, um, we have a crazy day and a crazy evening. And from my phone in the bathroom I put on some really good dance music on our living room speakers, that’s like in the kitchen, and I was like, let’s go to my husband. We went out and the five of us just spent like five minutes breaking down our best dance moves and like laughing and you know being together, and that’s all. You know. It’s a great way to start the day. You got to do what you got to do. Word, okay, exactly, you just got to do it too. Yeah. Third tip Who needs? who needs food when you have music? but that’s another shot. I was on plan Well.
0:15:13 – Speaker 3
I agree to disagree, but okay, um, my, this is my favorite one. I think my mom, in particular, was so good about finding little ways to celebrate all the time, um, and so that was, i remember, almost every year going up um on our half birthday, which is, like you know, six months of your regular birthday we would, um, she would wish us like a happy half birthday and she’d we’d sometimes have cupcakes or maybe there’d be like a little tree or whatever.
Um, before big holidays, um, like leading up to Valentine’s Day. Valentine’s Day is on the 14th, so there’s two weeks before And there were a couple of years where, starting like February 1st, she had like a cut out heart with our name on it just sitting on our on our kitchen table And every day for the two weeks we would all just write like a little note to each of our siblings about like Hey, here’s something I love about you, like just like a reason why I’m grateful for you. Um, she would find both my parents and that fun. They would find little things to celebrate and then just make it a big deal, and that usually didn’t involve much, if any, money or um, or a ton of prep. It was more like what’s coming up or what is going on today that we can just take an extra minute to talk about and to celebrate together, and I love that.
I still do that. I’m like what’s the national day today? Oh, it’s not a whole penguin day. I should text my friends who loves penguins, like that’s just kind of a way of life that I love, you know.
0:16:38 – Speaker 2
Oh, i see, I think those little traditions and little set apart moments, that, because we all know that, you know, like we said earlier, life is busy. It can become such a routine Like we get up, we go to school, we do this thing, we go to sports, you know, we do this, we do that. Oh, it’s bedtime. In another week, another month has passed by. What sets that apart is those moments where we look up and we look into our kids’ eyes and we celebrate or acknowledge or do something special that sets the day apart and breaks it up. And that’s exactly what she did. She pinpointed it. I love that so much.
0:17:12 – Speaker 3
And I think kids remember that. Oh, totally, Oh yeah, I’m cursed to know all my family’s half birthdays forever. Like it’s just in my head. I don’t think I need that information in my head, but it’s there, So sweet Yeah. I love the idea of like taking what you’re already doing or what’s already happening and just and just elevating it a little bit and just adding a little bit of conversation around it. Or maybe it’s a written thing or a treat, I mean. I think that that goes such a long way, especially if you have little kids. I think that’s awesome.
0:17:44 – Speaker 2
I have a friend that on the last day of school every year she fills her car up with balloons and then the kids get in the car and they just spill out everywhere and it’s hilarious and it’s fun. And you know, it’s just those little things that sometimes I think when we’re caught up in the business we think you know it doesn’t really matter, they don’t, they’re not really, they don’t care about it. It’s not really that big of a deal. My takeaway today and in our conversation the other day was those little things are a big deal. Yes, we have to have the conversations about all the hard things and dig into the relationship and find their safe place so that they can come to us about all the stuff they’re going through. But in the midst of all, that is the joyous little things that make life worth smiling about, right.
0:18:28 – Speaker 3
Absolutely. I think those like little things build like relational currency and trust right, because you know you’re gonna be celebrated by someone, someone sees you, someone cares about. spending one on one time with you are helping you spend one on one time with someone else. I think those are the things that maybe help set the table for some of those harder conversations.
0:18:46 – Speaker 2
so It’s not an either or right yes, as Mandy always says, it’s a both. And I will tell you, the biggest thing for me in wanting to do this is hope. Yes, just gives us parents hope that the little things matter, that we’re gonna be okay, that we can do these things and the big things. And we get a darby, because I will tell you from getting to know her.
She’s normal ish. Normal ish. No, she’s amazing and just really has been incredible. To get to know you and the value you have added in the wisdom at such a young age To our organization has been such a blessing, and so we wanted our listeners to get to meet you also.
0:19:30 – Speaker 3
Oh well, thanks give. I’ve learned so much from this, from you and for Mandy in the whole next time organization. I feel like I’m not a mom and I’m already a better mom in the future.
0:19:37 – Speaker 2
So Your future mom self.
0:19:39 – Speaker 3
Yes, yes, future mom, thanks you.
0:19:43 – Speaker 2
Well, thank your mom for doing a great job and thank you for being on the show today. I feel like there’s gonna be many more darby visits to the podcast And if you come up with an idea or you have a question for her or you have an idea of something you’re doing in your home that you felt like This little tip that just ups your parenting game, let us know. you can always email us at admin at nextTalk that work.
0:20:03 – Speaker 3
You can also just make it easy and tag us on social media, but That’s even better.
0:20:08 – Speaker 2
On my social media manager herself. Thanks so much for being on the show, darby.
0:20:12 – Speaker 1
Thanks, thank you so much for joining us, listening and sharing our podcast.
0:20:17 – Speaker 2
because of you, this show is in the top five percent of over two point nine million Podcast we have lots of resources for you, from counseling to live events, or if you have a show idea or a question for our team, visit our website. at nextTalk, we’d love to hear from you at nextTalk.
0:20:37 – Speaker 1
We’re more than cyber parenting.
0:20:39 – Speaker 3
It’s conversations to connect this podcast is not intended to replace the advice of a trained health care or legal professional, or to diagnose, treat or otherwise render expert advice regarding any type of medical, psychological or legal problem. Listeners are advised to consult a qualified expert for treatment.
Transcribed by https://podium.page