It’s 9:30 p.m., I finally snuck out of the room after bargaining and pleading with my two-year-olds to just go to sleep, and I have no idea how I will muster the energy to pick up after my twin tornadoes and prepare for the next day. Right now, neck deep in the trenches of parenthood, I sometimes find myself thinking of the day when I’ll have some peace and quiet, an evening to myself to wind down and relax instead of making a mad dash to the next day, only to repeat it all. Just as soon as those thoughts pop into my mind, I make a conscious effort to push them aside.
Because one day, they won’t need me anymore.
One day, I will eat a meal from start to finish while it is still warm, without having to get up to retrieve a dropped sippy cup or stray silverware.
One day, I will actually show up to appointments on time (or dare I say, early).
One day, I will have a perpetually clean house without any trace of doll brushes or stuffed animals or tiny shoes strewn about.
One day, this time will come and I am absolutely dreading it.
I have only been in the motherhood game for a couple of years, and I am already in disbelief at how the time is flying. I know how cliche it sounds, but it truly feels like it has been weeks, not years, since we brought our daughters home from the hospital – simultaneously in awe of the perfect, beautiful miracles that they were, and entirely terrified that it was our responsibility to keep them alive and raise them to adulthood. They went from relying on us for everything, to being able to do a little more by themselves each day, in what feels like the blink of an eye.
I can’t count the number of ‘lasts’ that have already passed by without me even knowing that it would be the last time. I would be lying if I said that I didn’t force one of my daughters to let me rock her to sleep against her will, after realizing that weeks had gone by since she last requested for me to “rock-a-baby” her before bed.
I am not trying to say that I never get upset or frustrated or struggle with my children – ask my husband about the time recently that he came to check on us during bedtime and I was on the floor sobbing harder than both kids combined – but the fear of the future, of them not needing me, truly makes me appreciate even the most brutal of days with them. So for now I am doing my best to savor it all, because as the saying goes, they’ll only be little for a little while. Tonight, when I ready them the same book five times in a row and they both ask “again?” You won’t find me complaining – unless it’s about that darn Barbie: A Mermaid’s Tale story again. Kidding, kind of.
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