I’m a very type-A person. When you’re a type-A person and you become a stay-at-home-mom to young kids, it can be a difficult adjustment. You’re on someone else’s time (routine and a schedule only go so far with unpredictable kids) but you still have a strong drive to accomplish something. ANYTHING. How often do we take a step back and soak in our kids? We’re probably too busy breaking up fights, wiping noses, getting food ready, changing diapers or helping with the potty, or wondering why it isn’t bedtime yet because there’s so much to do still. Wondering why we can’t find time to work out or make Pinterest-worthy snacks or crafts. Keeping a mental list (or if you’re like me, a paper list) of the billion things you need to cross off. On the flip side, if we’re working out of the home or in school, our time is stretched so thin that we have to balance all of the household tasks with maximizing quality time with our little ones. We become totally preoccupied with wondering if we’re giving enough to any part of our life.
My youngest son isn’t quite two. He put his hand in my hand tonight on the couch and rested his head on my chest and let out a big sigh and said “mama.” It was the reminder I needed to check the type-A frame of mind at the door and try to be more present with my kids and not so into what needs to be done all the time or doubting if I’m doing it right. There will be a time when they don’t want to play at home. When they don’t want to paint and ride bikes and play on the swings with mommy. When they stop asking for help all the time. When they don’t need us the way they do now. When we aren’t their whole world. When their faces don’t beam as much when we tell them they did a good job, or that we love them. When we aren’t cool anymore. They’ll want to see friends, to be out in the world. As much as a parent of a small child dreams of greater independence, there are so many things we’ll miss about this stage. I needed a reminder to slow down and stop obsessing over the next thing on the to-do list, and tonight it came in the form of that sweet little hand. As I’ve heard from so many… the days are long, but the years are short.