“Cherish these moments because before you know it he will be grown and moving out of the house.”
I can’t tell you how many times we have heard these sorted “pearls of wisdom” from loved ones / friends / complete strangers since Logan was born. Although I do appreciate the sentiment, I can’t help but admit that it does touch a raw nerve with me. (Actually, it’s beginning to become more of the “fly all over me” sort of reaction.) It’s not the phrase itself that sets me off. I’d like to think that these people do not have bad intentions and are not calling me a bad / inappreciative mother when I complain about said mishaps. But you know, it really does feel that way.
You see, these comments are typically preceded by conversations surrounding how tired I am or some disastrous event. I don’t complain much. But hey…I have a four month old. I’m tired. I do not enjoy being puked on or pooped on or being awakened hour upon hour during the night.
I’m the sort of person to put my feelings about situations right out there on the table. I say when I’m frustrated but I say when I’m overjoyed as well. I’ll tell you when you are driving me crazy but I’ll also tell you when you have made my heart smile. The implication of this phrase seems to be that one shouldn’t complain about these things because time flies by too quickly and I should cherish even THESE moments. I know, fellow reader, that you can hear my eyes rolling from wherever you are sitting right now.
Let’s be honest and let’s be frank. When your child threw up on you in the middle of church for the umpteenth time and you had to run to the bathroom and clean the two of you up as best you could, was that a happy “you are the greatest baby in the world” kind of moment? Surely it was not. Your first reaction was frustration and groaning. Yes, it does make for a funny “ha-ha” moment later on, but at the time = not so much. If you truly enjoy getting puked on by your child, you have bigger issues than I, fine friend / loved one / complete stranger.
Within the past couple of weeks, Logan has taken to waking up a couple of times a night once again. We were on a schedule and he had slept through the night for SEVERAL weeks. One night, the little love of my life decided that he wanted to try something new. (Actually, I think he is trying to teethe and that is what is waking him up because he isn’t hungry when he awakes.)
Dare I complain a few times here and there about how tired I am? Dare I mention to some people that if he is teething, that I hope it pops through soon because the lil guy isn’t sleeping well (and neither are we)? Dare I tell the story of how he blew OUT his diaper in the middle of Walmart? *gasp* I must not be “cherishing his moments”, or so one would think from the reactions I get when I tell these stories.
The responses are similar—giggles (expected), questions (expected), and then this statement (expected but not so welcomed). Anyone who TRULY knows me knows how much this child is loved, adored, and cherished. Yes, cherished. Do I not post on Facebook every time the baby gets a new booger or has a good bowel movement? I mean, not literally, but you see my point. It’s ridiculous even to ME how often I talk about this kid and he is mine! This is why mothers do not tell-it-like-it-is. This is why mothers pretend like everything is wonderful when they are exhausted. This is why new mothers that grow up around these types of mothers get so upset when it’s not all sunshine and rainbows upon bringing their newborn home.
I am not one to pretend that anything is or is not how it truly is. THIS mother will tell you the truth with no sugar-coating. Motherhood is hard. You are going to be tired and frustrated at times. You are going to have moments where you moan and groan and YES…complain. That is perfectly natural and perfectly healthy–because there are going to be so many more moments that take your very breath away.
You will be sitting in a rocking chair holding your little angel and you are going to feel your heart smile. You are going to feel it just swell in your chest because you love that baby more than you can even express. You are going to see him smile at you and you are going to know that there is always hope for every day to be brighter.
It’s an amazing thing. I cherish my son and our moments together more than anything in this world. It doesn’t mean that we are always perfect. It doesn’t mean that we will always be happy every moment of our lives together. But it does mean that we know there is always someone that loves you throughout all of that. Those are the memories of a lifetime–that is what makes you family.