Tonight, I got to rub H’s back until he fell asleep. He’s been sick, and he is exhausted. As I sat there with my arm squeezed through the side of his crib, I was struck by what a magical experience it is to watch your baby fall asleep. Pretty quickly after that realization, I got sore and my neck started to ache. All I wanted to do was stealthily sneak out and poor myself an enormous glass of red wine. Then I realized, there will come a time when all he’ll want to do is sleep, when he will not want me to rub his back, and when watching him sleep will definitely not be an option. So, I settled in.
Lately, I have read more than one article written by disgruntled parents sarcastically belittling people who tell them to enjoy every moment with their children because it goes so quickly. Next, they usually dive into a litany of ways that every moment of parenthood is most certainly not enjoyable and how living with a two year old is like living with a “mini-dictator”. Each article made me chuckle a bit, and I could picture myself in each terrorizing example. However, I was left with a bitter taste in my mouth. I fully understand that being a parent is full of highs and lows. I know that there are days where you feel like crying or yelling or both at any moment. But, I don’t think the stranger who offers their encouragement is trying to make you feel inadequate or ungrateful. I think that they recognize what a gift this time is with our little people who want nothing more than to hold your hand and cuddle with you on the couch. It can be absolutely exhausting when that little voice says, “Mommy, come play with me,” but it comes from a little munchkin who will not always have Mommy as number one on their playmate list. So, I guess I hope that my generation can have patience with those who look at us and are reminded of a time when they too were overtired, at times frustrated, young parents. They haven’t forgotten those moments - they have just realized how precious the magical ones are.
Honey, we is blessed.