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Published: June 29th 2014
I plan to give you love, nuturing, and enough dysfunction to make you funny ~ Motherhood quote
Just because you go away, doesn't mean you can completely forget your home life and more importantly, your kids. I struggled with that going to Paris, as I'd never been away from the girls for that long. Ava was only 7 back in 2012... I really needed to be able to do this trip not worried about anybody or without feeling guilty. Lara's health has greatly improved (yay Lara) so this just worked out right.
Our kids are so happy we are doing this, but at the same time, they aren't that old that they don't feel our presence and attention missing. I admit I was an awfully homesick kid; even when I was 12. I remember slow dialing the phone so my friend wouldn't hear me call my mom to come get me in the middle of the night. So I can relate to the kids being lonely already after speaking with them on the phone last night...(Aww it's nice to be missed though too!) The house has free calling to Canada, so it is an added bonus to be so
close yet so far away.
For the past two days while I acclimatize to couple-hood from parenthood, I have sort of felt like I'm a mother duck looking behind for her baby ducks. Being in a place where we've vacationed with the kids is kind of odd, but it's yet an exhilarating feeling to be alone without all the fuss and muss. It's a feeling we only knew for a small amount of time as a couple because Lara really wanted to be in our couple's photos 😊 (in other words, we found out we were expecting Lara a year after meeting... Lucky us 😊
We only had a short time to 'wine & dine" & enjoy the freedom to head off to a movie or game of pool unhindered. After all that changed (having kids) and when we'd go out for a rare date night (expecting to feed a baby a bottle in the night when we got home), we'd see young couples out, having date night themselves, sipping ohlala expensive wine, eating sushi, & probably talking about the future and the beautiful kids they'd have. I'd catch myself thinking, "ah arent't they cute" and wanting to
whisper in their ears to "enjoy it now because date nights will soon be a thing of the past". And if you fast forwarded their life like a movie, you'd probably scare the loving daylights out of them of what was to come, and the population would die off like fruit flies.
I think you'd all agree that there's no way to actually prepare for parenthood until you stick your foot into it, and by then, well you're immersed up to your eyebrows. It's just a roller coaster journey with its ups and down, its highs & lows and it's work, if you want to do it right.
Those without kids almost need a practice course to get a taste of the labor intensive work involved. Labor as they say, does not end when the baby is born.
Tips on practicing motherhood would be to start by sticking a 30 pound weighted ball inside your shirt, and carry it around for 9 months, then at the end of the 9 months, only take 20 pounds out & leave 10 stubborn pounds that cling to you like a bounce sheet.
Tips for dad would be to put
down the newspaper, as it's the last paper you'll read in 5 years. And good luck with watching that hockey game uninterrupted. Forget that splashy sports car, start thinking about a 7 seater van, then go empty your garbage can into the back of it. Then do it again and again and again. Oh and call in the Hazmat squad to try and get that chocolate bar from under your kids booster seat after an 85 degree summer day. Then repeat everything you say 5 times a day at least.
And start practicing, "because I said so that's why"...and repeat it 5 times to yourself cause nobody else is listening. Have someone tug at your shirt or arm while you try and talk to an adult. Start practicing walking around your living room with a 10 pound sack from 10pm till midnight, nodding off, then jerking wide awake nearly jolting your little 10 pound sack through the ceiling because when they're colicky...OMG. Then put little 10 pound sack to bed, and sleep for maybe 2 hours to start it all over again.
Oh & be be sure to anchor your TV to the floor, hide the remotes and
then slather your curtains and couch with peanut butter and jam and then dump your glass of milk on the carpet. Cause guaranteed, that will happen to your lovely home.
And go grocery shopping by bringing a wild goat with you; because the terrible twos in the cereal aisle is enough for all moms to start drinking. (OK our kids were never like this, but I did witness many wild kids in the grocery stores). 5 year plan? HAHAHA...your 5 year plan is that parenthood will have you by the ----- (insert your own word here).
Practice baking 30 cupcakes and decorating them to look like vampires for a H'ween party at school to rush out the door and have them slide ride off the plate into a crumpled mess onto your carpet where your dog then rushes like an Olympian runner to scarf it up, only to him heave it up onto your carpet 10 minutes later. WAHHHHHHH. That's the real picture of parenthood, no matter how wonderful and sweet your offspring are. It's really good none of us knew all that before we got into the kid business 😊
Dear parenthood, I have loved every
minute of you, but there is some beauty in seeing your kids grow up so that you can finally enjoy a bit more freedom. While I see babies and toddlers and remember my sweet little bundles of joy, I have to say, the parenthood journey is awesome, tiring, frustrating, exhilarating, life-changing, life altering, amazing, and makes you tearful (both the proud happy tears and the sad tears) and it makes you realllly enjoy your own personal space and downtime when you get it. And I've never enjoyed anything so much as the last 2 days; even lugging luggage, switching flights, line ups at the airport, a lady kicking my seat on the plane, long bathroom waits, moving accommodations, lack of phone/email use etc.
No matter how old your kids get, you are always a parent (if you're lucky). And you can be in the most beautiful spot in the world like we are, and tear up behind your sunglasses (like I did yesterday) cause you miss those little monkey-heads more than you can believe when they aren't consuming your every minute.
It sure makes me grateful to have children that will see me into my old age, who
will ensure I'm safe, warm, loved and protected. When the tables turn from parents being the caregivers to children being the caregivers of their parents, then your life has come full circle...(For you Barb Foran who said that to me a few weeks back after losing your sweet beautiful mom). And to my mom too who cared so diligently for her parents.
And to this day, the book "Love You Forever" by Robert Munsch can turn both Al and I into blubbering fools. (Ironically he wrote it as a tribute to his two stillborn babies. He has sold 15,000,000 books, mostly bought by adults for adults and not so much intended for children. It's one of those things that resonates for parents more as their children become adults I think. But we read it to our children and many of you have too I'm sure.
So cheers to all you parents who can understand the journey of parenthood, but who can relish having adult time which we are so indulging in. I am wrapped up in the knowledge I will see their sweet faces again in a matter of a week. And to all of you that still
have parenthood ahead of you...well sorry for all that gibberish above, just ignore everything I just said 'cause parenthood is a thrilling give-away-your-heart total adventure. So fasten your seat belt and enjoy the ride 😊
MOM, mommy, MOM!, ma, etc I'll love you forever, I'll like you for always, As long as I'm living my baby you'll be. ~ Robert Munsch
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