If you ever want to make time speed up in your life, have a baby. I know it’s a widely over used saying that “they grow up so fast” but it is definitely true.
Yesterday my baby turned two. My oldest is three and a half. My husband and I celebrated our 5th wedding anniversary on Saturday. And come November we will have officially been together 11 years.
I still think of life without kids as just around two years ago, but really it’s been much longer.
I tell people all the time, “they aren’t old enough for that” but then realize either they are, or will be soon enough. I don’t have babies. I have a full on toddler. And even though I still call them both toddlers, Tempest is actually preschool age and we’ve begun our homeschool journey by teaching pre-math and drawing letters.
So, when someone says “they grow up so fast” they mean it. And no matter how fast you thought that would be pre-kids, it’ll be faster once they are born and growing.
I know every parent gets told multiple times to cherish the time you have. And some days that’s going to be really hard. Even though your children will grow up in the blink of an eye, some days you will wonder how there is still 3 hours until nap time. And you will wait for each second to pass.
But most days, you’ll find yourself wondering where the time went. Most days are so filled that they are constant movement. Today is already half over. It’s already 1:30. I barely had the breakfast dishes cleaned up before the girls started whining about lunch. Alice is still in her PJs. Tempest isn’t dressed either but instead decided to “run around nakey butt” so she can pee in the potty chair. I’ve got one cup of coffee down. I haven’t done anything else except fetch food and sippy cups. And help with clean-up because “it’s too hard if you don’t help”
My friends praise me for how much I do, but honestly, I never feel like I do much. Its because as a parent, non-kid accomplishments are slow. I can never dedicate 4 hours to something. Since becoming a parent, everything in my life is done in 5 minute spurts. and most of those are done with a toddler talking at me or at the very least screaming in the background. It’s in these moments, when I see my friends who are kid-less or who have grown children tell me that they took a 2 hour nap, or that they think they will decide to paint for an hour. And part of me gets really jealous. Don’t get me wrong, I’m actually really happy for their accomplishments, but sometimes it seems like it is so much time. And I think about my kid-less years and the time I “wasted”. I think about the times I complained about not getting enough sleep, or the times I thought I was so busy and “couldn’t possibly fit another thing into my schedule”. But the truth is, I was busy. My friends are busy too. As a parent, my schedule is unpredictable. It is also exhausting. I don’t actually get a lot done, but it takes a lot of energy to constantly switch tasks. I forget this.
Time in my life is the most precious resource. My children are two and three and a half. I didn’t get to do many things I wanted to do with my children as babies. Now, it’s time to let that go and move on. And time to realize, we don’t have time to do all the things I want to with them as toddlers. We will never get to everything. But I can cherish my time and try to make the best of my time. It doesn’t mean that I will be in-love with every moment of my life. It does mean that I will work on making more days special, for me and my children. I will take every opportunity to slow down life because it is too fast and children grow at a rapid speed.