Welcome to Mommy Mondays, the one day of the week I wax poetic about the parenting journey.
Yesterday at book club we got into a long discussion about parenting. It started out simply enough, talking about toddler time outs and things. But as we got a little deeper, I gave voice to emotions I had never spoken aloud.
Parenting is a series of decisions large and small. All day long, in what feels like every moment, there is a decision happening or being weighed to happen, or just on the horizon. Do I let her try it on her own? Do I bribe him to stop screaming? Should I call about preschool? Do I discipline or discuss?
Both the daily minutia and the over-arching philosophies all have the end game in mind. We are all moving toward the launch of these little people into the real world. I care so much more about what my daughter thinks of me when she’s twenty-five than I do when she’s five.
So I do what I need to do, sometimes fail miserably, sometimes make the right choice even when I don’t wanna, sometimes screw it up, sometimes smile to myself in parental victory.
But I can get a twinge of disappointment that I’m not the “fun” parent.
I’ve wished the disciplinarian side didn’t come so naturally.
I’ve questioned the parenting decisions we’ve made together.
I’ve lamented roles I’ve taken on for myself.
You know how they say marriage and parenting are a marathon and not a sprint? It’s longer even than that metaphor. I am never not a mother, never not a wife. This is indescribably beautiful. These things are not something I do, they’re something I am.
Four years into parenting and nearly six years into marriage, I’m not sure I know that much more than I did on day one. So when I’ve had days of discouragement - and I have, many - I will remember to keep my eye on the prize.
‘Cause that’s exactly what it is.