For years I have heard, “It's tough being a parent these days.” Really though, it's always tough being a parent.
Let's face it: life can be difficult. It is full of challenges, lessons and sleepless nights.
It's always humorous to me when a child is born how someone always has to tell the new parents “Good luck, you'll never sleep again.” Without trying to diminish the pain of sleep deprivation, it really can be an issue; it isn't so different from financial debt is it?
Just like money, we often spend our waking hours where we want to use it most. Whether we are engaged in a hobby, gripped by our favorite television show, reading a compelling novel or out with friends – we often don't mind staying up for what we like.
There seems to be a rush to get our babies to sleep through the night in order to preserve our own ability to do what we want. Granted, if this is not baby number one, there are other little ones clamoring for our attention in the wee hours, I get that.
Just like finances, we have to adjust the purse strings on our social life as well. It's like saving up for something we really want; it may take some sacrifice, but it will be worth it.
The first year with our second one, my husband swears that no one slept...ever. She had numerous special needs as well as medical issues that kept us tired even when we did have sleep.
The short nights and interrupted sleep lasted much longer for us than it does for typical children, but even then, it didn't stay forever. Neither does the skinned knees, spilled snacks or sticky floors.
As a mom in this part of the journey, it won't last forever. Enjoy the parts you can and rest up for the tough nights. If it means prioritizing your schedule, then switch things around where you can.
Hold those babies while they are tiny. Relax to the pattern of their breathing. Hum the melody in your heart. Cherish these moments that will go by all too quickly. You can miss out on the last chapter of the book, your friends can gather earlier for a laugh and that television show will be on Netflix before you know it.
These babies won't stay babies and will be teenagers soon.
...it\'s always tough to be a parent.