Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Being a Parent Is Hard

Being a parent is hard.  I know, I know...I only have one!  Some families have 2, 3, 4...and if you're the Duggars you have upwards of 2 dozen kids!  I haven't been there (yet!) so I can honestly say I don't know how you do it.  Hadley is 15 1/2 months and never stops.  Never.  I love it because she is learning so much and doesn't want to miss anything, but by the end of the butt is whooped.  Over the past few days, I've thought about the different reasons parenting is hard to me.  Here's a few of them.

Always on the go!

Parenting is hard because I don't know if I'm making the right decisions for her.  Is keeping her out of daycare the right choice?  She's so active and friendly, would she bloom even more with children her age?  Or would she not get the attention she needed?  When do I need to take her to the dentist?  I brush her 10 little teeth every day.  But... I let her eat raisins...are her teeth going to rot and fall out before we even get our first cleaning?  I let her watch tv sometimes.  (The horror...) Is she going to develop a learning disorder because I let her watch tv before the recommended age of 2?  Is the time right to cut out her morning nap, or does she still need that sleep?

Parenting is hard because I have no time to myself.  I have to make an effort to get up at 6 every morning to make time for my devotional, enjoy a cup of coffee, and a little quiet before baby girl wakes up.  Shower by myself?  Joke.  Change from dirty sweats into clean sweats?  Not without a sidekick.  Bathroom?  I have my own personal flusher.  Eat a delicious breakfast?  Only if I want to share most of it (with my daughter, my dog, and my cat...yikes.).  And when hubby gets home from work, he needs attention, too! ;)

(My sincere apologies to all the Target shoppers who get to see my un-showered, no make-up self multiple times a's the stage of life we're in, y'all.)

Parenting is hard because the house is always a mess.  There is always laundry to do, dishes to wash and put away, and toys to clean up.  But the exact toy I put away is the exact toy she wants to play with at that exact moment.  And she wants to play with Mommy.  I can't do laundry and dishes when my girl wants to play.  I've always heard, "there will be time later to put things away."  And that's right.  There is time later when she naps or when she goes to bed.  But what they don't mention is when she naps and goes to bed, all I want to do is sit down!  Prop my feet up!  Have a drink of water! (Or wine...)  Read a book!  And most of the time I choose to sit down instead of clean up.  (Sorry to those of you who have been to my house when it's a can attest to what I'm saying, ha!)

I'm not sure the glass door will ever be clean again. ;)

Parenting is hard because I can't stop kissing her chubby cheeks when she says "no."  She's a little person now, full of her own opinions and she won't hesitate to tell me "no" when she doesn't want hugs and kisses.  But I made you!  I can hug you and kiss you any time I want to!  But, in order to teach her that people need to keep the personal boundaries you set, I solemnly let go and try to keep the hurt from my eyes.  Can't I just kiss your cheeks one more time?  "No."  Okay then.

Parenting is hard because I can't put her down when she falls asleep in my arms.  I'm going to be brutally honest here.  I rock my baby to sleep.  And I don't feel bad about it one bit.  Now that she's a little older, she's usually still slightly awake when I put her in her bed, but there are still those (fleeting!) times where she falls asleep in my arms.  And I just can't put her down.  The drool spot on my shoulder gets bigger and bigger,  her warm breath gets sweet and sweeter, and her little body just relaxes until she practically melts into me.  I know in my head it would be best to put her in her bed, but my heart just can't do it.  One more minute, just like this, please.  After all, she won't go to college wanting me to rock her to sleep!

Parenting is hard because my face hurts from smiling so much.  This child of mine is so full of life. She dances, she spins circles, she stomps her feet, claps her hands, and will send herself into fits of giggles that you can't help but laugh at.  My face hurts, y'all.  I can't help but smile when she dances to T. Swift's "Shake it Off", or sees "Mimi!" (Minnie Mouse) on tv, or attempts to mouth the songs I'm singing to her, or sees herself in pictures and says "Ha-yee!", or...the list goes on and on.  I have wrinkles around my eyes and permanent grin lines.  She fills my heart with such joy and everyday gets better and better with her.

Parenting is hard.  It's supposed to be, I think.  The constant worry, the constant fear of "am I doing this right?" But she is so worth it.  She's mine.  God made her the perfect daughter for me.  He knew just who she would need to raise her into a strong woman and He knew just who I needed to push me to be who He needs me to be for His kingdom.  I will gladly take the tough decisions, the lack of privacy, and mess, all if it means I get that one "yes, Mommy" you can have one more kiss.

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