I preface this post with the fact that I actually wrote it 2 years ago. I was a new mom. I had a teething kid, I wasn’t sleeping a lot, and I was breastfeeding him which caused even more no sleeping. Although the landscape has changed – the sentiment remains the same. When you ask me how I do it all (and many people ask me that), I have started saying “because I don’t sleep”. And it’s true, although is not the fault of my teething infant anymore.
If you’re not going to read any further than this, here’s what you need to know:
YOU CANNOT DO IT ALL.
I admit, it’s not the first time I’ve heard this. My parents always told me this, over and over again. Indeed, after I typed that, the voice in my head was my dad saying it.
We’ve been on the fast track a while now – buy a house, get engaged, get married, move 3500 km from our support network, buy another house, get a dog, have a kid. That’s a lot for four years. (Add in it’s now going on six, and moved AGAIN to our biggest farm project to date.).
When people ask me about my kid, I always tell them that parenting is the best job I’ve ever had, but it’s also the most challenging. I get a few double takes at that one. I don’t think every parent would tell you it’s challenging. I think we forget to tell everyone about the challenging part; we see all the happy faces,
They are important too! Remembering RIGHT NOW when he has been hacking and keeping me awake for two nights. I still love the child, but my patience is tried, my body is tired, and I just want to be able to sit down and do something for mama. It isn’t always possible – sometimes because you love them so much, you just have to “get ‘er done” and find a moment of peace where you can.
I think the Swedish proverb says it best: “love me when I least deserve it, because that’s when I need it most.”
When we first took prenatal classes, the instructor went around the room and asked us, “What will you relax upon/give up when you are a parent?” and after a few people went before me, I was still completely dumbfounded by the question. Give up? Most other individuals said they would relax on having a super clean house. That was not, and is not, me. I had a hard time wrap my head around the question. I don’t honestly think I gave a good answer on that one. I was still thinking about it.
In short, no one is Superwoman, and we cannot do it all. With parenting and having fun with J taking up more and more of my time (and rightly so), there are things I have to let go on.
So, almost a year in a half later, here is what I’ve changed or given up:
- I cannot do everything that everyone asks of me. I have to say no sometimes.
- Our house isn’t clean, it isn’t even tidy. It looks like a toy bomb went off in here.
- I am giving up on doing laundry once a week. It doesn’t work; it has to be more often.
- I forget to eat until I’m starving.
- I am giving up on matching socks. I spend way too much time matching socks.
- I have given up trying to walk my dog every day. I do it three times a week.
- I give up trying not to carry my phone 24/7 and unplug. It’s my lifeline.
- I give up doing things most evenings
- My free time (the little that exists) is freaking precious. It’s okay to hoard some of those quiet moments for myself.
- I have given up on having a clean, organized car
What have you given up as a parent? What things moved down the importance list? Share them with us below.