It’s one of those things that all parents dread. For me it is one of my worst nightmares. I know it's something that I am totally powerless to stop. This is a fear that we all know will come to pass. However good at parenting we are, this one is totally out of our control.
The slow and inevitable ticking of time.
And there's nothing like the bitter sweet of another birthday to mark the tocking of the years.
Another notch in the almanac that is the brief amount of time we have on the planet.
Is it me or do the clocks tick a different tock after we have children? We look back on last week only to realise it was 5 years ago.
I remember it like yesterday. Being in hospital with my first baby. The rain streaming down the windows. Incarcerated for 5 days. The hormones! The longing to take my little bundle home.
I remember his soft downy hair. The perfect fuzzy smell of baby. I remember countless sleepless nights. Not begin able to get him back to sleep. The frustration. The tiredness.
Was it yesterday or 7 years ago? In this strange thing we call ‘time’. Where did that time go? How did he get so big? I have to stop myself from panicking. He’ll be packing his bags and leaving home soon.
I Suspect I'm Not Alone
I know this is how all parents feel. I know that I knew it would happen. But it doesn’t make it any easier when it does. I love him to bits now and I enjoy every moment with him (OK, nearly every moment) but here’s a reminder to all parents.
Enjoy them while they are young. All of it. Even the tiredness, the poos, the screams, the tantrums, the frustration. I know it can be really difficult at times. There are occasions when you wonder where your life is, swamped under mountains of laundry and stacks of dirty plates. There are days when all they seem to do is scream.
But that IS them. That is who they are. Before you know it, they’ll be big and grown up and will be going off to be grown up children. To lead their own independent life. It may seem like ages away but by then today will only be yesterday.
Be Grateful for What You Do Have
When you feel overwhelmed by frustration. Stop. Take a deep breath and drink it in. Remember, you’ll even miss that when it’s gone.
I always think you can compare yourself up or you can compare yourself down. There will always be people who seem to have so much more than you but there will always be so many more people who seem to have so little.
So in those times when it seems tough, think about what you do have and realise that you have so much more than so many other people.
You are lucky.
I know that I am lucky. I am lucky to have an amazing husband and four amazing children. Even when life is overwhelming and tiring and stressful. I am lucky to have so much love.
Time might be ticking slowly on but that's even more reason to grasp every single moment. To love, cherish and enjoy every single moment.
Happy Birthday Galen, all my love, Mummy.