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Today's Family Magazine

MOMMY CHRONICLES: Live in the moment because new stages are coming

Oct 23, 2018 11:50AM

Cuddle your little ones as you read another bedtime story. Treasure it all, and know that the moments you share during these seemingly long days will be over before you know it.

By Stacy Turner

Recently, a friend and I commiserated about the changes we’ve experienced during the transition from working woman to mother.  Like me, she left a challenging corporate job to stay home with her daughter.  Since returning home, some days she has trouble adjusting from full-time career woman to full-time mom.

Our experiences are slightly different, since I made the change when my daughters were small and her change took place when her daughter entered middle school.  But our shared experiences are very similar. While we're both fortunate that our husbands are involved dads, their demanding jobs definitely take precedence, and the day-to-day demands of our kids fall to us.  We each appreciate the gift that due to their hard work, we’re able to work part-time, flexible jobs that allow us more time to be home with our kids.  Similarly, we feel we’ve been placed exactly where we need to be at this particular time for a reason.  But we don’t always experience this clarity.

Sometimes, when knee deep in dirty laundry, juggling work deadlines while figuring what to make for dinner in the allotted time between various activities, or rushing out to buy poster board for that forgotten school project, it’s easy to wonder if this is all really part of the master plan for our lives.  While in the middle of the pickup lane, the grocery store, or yet another trip to Target, it’s easy to lose sight of the big picture.  It’s hard to see that we really are right where we’re supposed to be, even though it may not always feel that way.

Just like teething or potty training, which at the time seemed like we’d never survive, whatever happiness or trial you’re living right now will eventually end.  This stage, wherever you happen to be in this moment right now, will eventually give way to the next stage.  And though often the days seem endless with predawn wake-ups, battles of will, and the constant activity of inquisitive minds and busy hands, we’ve each made it here, to this moment now.  Take comfort that each stage, no matter how long it may seem in that moment, is just a snapshot in time.  Like that intense, scary storm you can’t wait to end or that perfect spring day you hope never will, motherhood has its seasonality as well.  Looking back, I realize the truth that the days may indeed be long, but the years most definitely are short.

I’m not sure, maybe this is something all parents experience; I only know the mom's perspective.  I do know that as we run through our busy days that lead to busy weeks filled with work and school and errands and responsibilities, it’s easy to lose sight of the big picture.  Make sure you stop for a few minutes to catch your breath.  And know that whatever stage you’re currently in, whether its good or bad, know that it’s only temporary.

Cuddle your little ones as you read another bedtime story.  Don’t let worries of a big mess keep you from decorating cookies with icing and sprinkles.  Enjoy those silly conversations on the way home from practice. Know she didn’t really mean those angry words she said after a hard day at school.  Give them your full attention when they show you the awesome grade they earned.  Be patient as you help them struggle through that tough assignment.  Enjoy seeking out the perfect outfit for that big dance.  Treasure it all, and know that the moments you share during these seemingly long days will be over before you know it.