I have held lots of different titles in my life, but there isn’t one I answer to with greater pride than that of “Mom”. When my son, Vince, was born 10 years ago, well-wishers told me time and again — “They grow up fast. Hold on to them while you can.” And while I have learned that lots of parenting advice is bogus, the “blink of an eye” warning is certainly true.
Here’s what I’ve learned in 10 years.
1. You can’t begin to say you have PATIENCE until you’ve been a parent. I honestly used to think I was patient, but I’ve come to realize that my patience was simply never tested. Huge difference.
2. “Long days” also takes on a new meaning. The summer between my sophomore and junior years of college, I had an internship with Minnesota Holstein Association….which is a group of people who own cows that have papers verifying their heritage. Anyhow, I used to milk my family’s 120 cows, drive 45 minutes to my internship, put in 8 hours of office work, drive 45 minutes home, and then milk those 120 cows again. I thought those were long days. They had nothing on parenting.
The endless silly cup refills.
Snotty nose wipings.
The explosion of papers at the end of the school week.
In 10 years, I have come to this conclusion:
If you drop into bed at night, completely exhausted…asking God to just get you through this week, that next week certainly won’t contain such long days…then you are doing nothing wrong; you are probably doing everything right.
Also, isn’t it strange that the number of kids you have doesn’t really affect this? As a parent, you are always maxed out.
3. Parades, caroling, Christmas lights, Sunday School programs and opening snail-mail cards….when I see my children’s reactions to these wonderful things this time of year, it makes my heart swell with pride. It’s the simple traditions!
Having my firstborn enter the world so close to Christmas was just humbling. I totally understood the concept of Christ being born as a helpless baby, yet still a King.
Enjoy the season with those you love dearly.