I am finding myself in an interesting place these days. A place where the days can sometimes pass by at a snail’s pace, where time moves so slowly I feel like I’m watching the clock just waiting for bedtime. At the same time, they speed by so fast that I can’t keep up. I wake up and it’s April, when I feel like September was yesterday and school just started a few weeks ago.
It’s a place where I seem to have multiple people living inside of me. On one side I’m that mom of young children. That mom that spends so much of her time just trying to keep up with the spilled milk, diaper changes, nap times, toys everywhere and the CONSTANT grabbing of little hands.
The mom who can play ponies with the four-year old, do dishes, and keep the destructive 18-month old from pulling a stack of unopened mail off the counter and onto his head at the same time.
That mom who hates it when well-meaning strangers say, cherish every moment, it goes by so fast. That mom who, on a really bad day, kind of wants to punch those strangers in the face.
They have no idea that I’m working on about three and a half hours of interrupted sleep, spent my morning cleaning up a bowl of yogurt that was launched from the toddler in his high chair, and I only came out to the store because we were out of milk and I desperately needed to see other adults for a few minutes to remind me I’m not alone. Yes, I love love love my kids, but these days can pass soooo sloooowly.
However, since I have older kids too, there’s another side. I look at my 10 year old, and think, where has the time gone? Didn’t I just teach you to tie your shoes? How is it possible you can fit in my shoes now? Weren’t we working on your ABC’s just yesterday? How can I possibly be helping you with a book report today? What do you mean, preteen camp? Didn’t you just have your first sleepover at Grandma’s house? How did everything go by so quickly?
My eight year old can use my computer better than me and can clean the bathroom by herself (ok, that one’s not so bad). It seems like five minutes ago that I was rocking her back to sleep when she had a nightmare. Where did my little babies go?
And that side of me, the one with the older children who are getting more independent every day, looks at the mom of little ones and says, cherish every moment, it goes by so fast.
It’s an interesting place. I never thought there would come a time when I wanted to punch myself in the face.