In the age of social media, it’s hard to find a mom that is not part of a parenting-related group on Facebook. Typically, these groups consist of women with similar interests or parenting styles sharing stories, advice, funny pictures or commiserating about stressful times with their children. It makes you feel like you aren’t alone in this crazy world with these rambunctious children. Until … you get the dreaded comment, “Enjoy these moments; you’re gonna miss this one day.” I want to stomp my feet and scream at the top of my lungs, “but I don’t want to enjoy these moments! I don’t want to miss this!”
There is a popular country song by Trace Adkins with the lyrics:
I think of this song every time someone says, “you’re gonna miss this one day.” The truth is, I don’t want to miss this. I don’t want to miss the sleepless nights, the hour-long temper tantrums, the door-slamming, and the eye-rolling. I don’t want to miss running late in the morning, occasionally missing the school bus, or having to tell my kids to put their shoes on 73 times in the morning. I don’t want to miss the bickering and arguing between sisters who adore each other but drive each other crazy at the same time.
Instead of cherishing every single moment, I choose to remember the moments that make my heart flutter and my eyes well up with tears. I will miss our weekend bedtime snuggle nights. Every Friday and Saturday night, we all pile into mom and dad’s king-size bed and snuggle and laugh until we fall asleep. I will miss the days that I come home from work so exhausted with fast food for dinner, and my 4-year old looks at me and says: “Thank you for bringing us home this dinner, mommy.” I will miss the days that my 8-year old still wants to be like me and get her hair cut like me. THESE are the times I will miss.
There is no manual for parenting, so here is my advice to you. No one says you have to enjoy every moment of your child’s life. So take the time. Take the time to vent, decompress and relax. Take the time to have some “me” time. Take the time to miss your children. It may only be a night away or maybe you require a weekend. Sometimes you need to miss someone in order to appreciate them more. And when you come back, tell them you missed them. Tell them how you couldn’t wait to see them. Cherish the joy on their faces when they run to you after a long day, how snuggly they are when they wake up in the morning (I know it won’t last long) and how they want to snuggle with you before bed because that is what you are going to miss. That is what you are going to want back.