“I will never let my child(ren) ______________________”, you fill in the blank. I think it’s safe to say that as moms we’ve all muttered these words aloud at one time or another. If you don’t want to admit that you said it, you at least thought it. Be honest. I know I did.
I can think of several different things I said (or thought) I would never allow my children do. Well, guess what? Almost five years and three kids later, I can tell you exactly where to find those words. In the trash. The rule book I had created in my mind long before seeing those two pink lines appear on my first positive pregnancy test, is now completely non existent.
In an effort to “keep it real,” and be completely transparent, I thought I’d share a few of those things I said I’d never do:
- “I will never let my children sleep in the bed with me.” Y’all, for almost five years we have had at least one if not all three children in our bed. I’m not talking about the occasional snuggle session. I’m talking, almost every night someone is waking up in the middle of the night and tiny feet somehow end up in my face.
- “I will never fix my kids a separate meal when they refuse to eat what we are eating.” Picky eaters would be an understatement. My two bigger boys have literally survived on peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, mac ‘n cheese, and protein bars for the past two years. Some days I feel like all they want to eat are goldfish, veggie straws, fruit snacks, and the occasional cup of yogurt. I can proudly say that I am trying to be more consistent with having them try new things. Wish me luck!
- “I will never use the TV as a babysitter for my kids.” HA! I currently have an almost 5 year old, a 3 1/2 year old, and a 17 month old. On some days the TV is the only way I can get anything done, take two consecutive sips of coffee, or go three minutes without someone saying, “Mommy! Mommy!” I won’t lie, I’m very thankful for Buzz, Woody, and the whole gang. They have brought hours of free entertainment and chunks of time where this tired mama could enjoy a little break.
- “I will never take naps while my kids are napping. I will be productive and get things done!” After my youngest was born I felt very accomplished once I got all three kids on the same (generally speaking) afternoon nap schedule. This became an absolutely sacred time for me, and I looked forward to those two hours all day every day. For almost an entire year, nap time included mommy, too. I have no shame in the fact I would sleep, and I mean sleep HARD, for those two (sometimes three) hours until I heard the first child wake up. I was exhausted. It was glorious. And I wouldn’t go back and do it any other way!
If there is one thing I have learned from being a mom, it’s that I have to be flexible! Along with that flexibility comes being OK with unmet expectations. The expectations I have for each day, no matter how realistic they might be, will not always be met. I have learned to throw out the rule book every now and then, and be 100% ok doing so.
I’ve only been a mom for five years, and I know I have a TON of things left to learn. However, if I could go back and fill in that blank now I think I would say, “I will never let my children go a day without feeling loved.” One day they’ll be out of my bed. One day they’ll be fixing their own meals, and I’ll have to beg them to sit down with me to watch a show on TV. One day I will get to sleep in and nap whenever and however long I want. That will be one glorious day!