The days are long, but the years are short. If I hear one more experienced parent (or grandparent) say this I might scream… only because I’m beginning to learn how TRUE it really is. Although I do work sometimes, my stay-at-home-mom days are often long. I mean, LOOOOOOOOOONG. (I say that with the utmost love.)
More and more, I find myself checking my kitchen clock and wondering how it’s only 10:30am and how the heck are we going to kill another hour-and-a-half until lunch?!?!? Sure, we have our days of activities and playdates (and I create MY days of good times too), but every day can’t be like that (unless I’m willing to give into having zero food in the fridge and a mess comparable to what WWIII would be like).
So, we all sit on the floor and stick stickers on my face. We roll bouncy balls down the hallway while singing Disney songs. We go outside to water the roses and blow bubbles to the sky. My own mom often teases me “What happened to you!” and laughs, referring to the days when I used to spend my hours at the Four Seasons Beverly Hills interviewing celebrities. Just today I told my husband that my primary focus lately swirls around how to kill time with the girls from breakfast to dinner. He told me that was “sad,” but I’m going to look at it from a different perspective.
Killing time isn’t a bad thing as long as you’re willing to accept if for what it is and just have FUN in each moment. Watching my one-and-a-half year old concentrate on her tiny fingers with all her might just to un-peel the stickers that her older sister stuck on my forehead is a hoot-and-a-half. Trying to interpret made-up lyrics (toddler-style) to ‘Part of Your World’ is a riot. The visual of my barefoot two-and-a-half year old dragging our gardening hose around the yard while I yell at my younger girl across the grass to not eat rocks will be ingrained in my memory forever. Thinking of all these things (now) makes me laugh, even though I’m admittedly glazed over while they’re actually happening. So yes, the days ARE long… which doesn’t make any sense at all since my girls have gotten so big in the blink of an eye.
If I’m learning one thing these days, it’s this: Being a mom is making me more accepting and appreciative to just “be.” (Trust me, I know how philosophical that probably sounds. Very unlike me.) I still get antsy about not being able to accomplish certain career aspirations and household goals during the day (yes, that pile of folded laundry still has to be put away), but it doesn’t bother me as much as it used to. Life will go on. They’ll never be this little again. I literally looked at my older toddler just yesterday and asked “How do you know how to talk so well?” She just looked at me, like, Why are you being weird. But when did she learn how to hold a perfectly sense-making conversation about My Little Pony episodes?
This IS the time that I’ll look back on as an old lady and think Those were great days. And if these great days happen while I’m just killing time, then so be it.
WHAT DO YOU DO TO KILL TIME WITH KIDS?