“It just never gets any easier does it?” my husband commented to me the other day.
One of our twins was having a meltdown about taking a shower – because obviously it is the absolute end of the world to not be stinky and covered in dirt.
The other one was near tears after struggling through their homework for over an hour. (Parents whose kids don’t naturally do well in school – I feel your pain and theirs. It’s so hard.)
My husband who had been helping with reading walked back into the kitchen with this defeated remark.
“Nope.” was my reply. “It changes but it never gets easier.”
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I’m sorry. If you’re holding out hope that parenting will at some point get easy. I don’t think there’s an easy part coming.
I could tell you know about how much I love my kids – because of course I do. And I could tell you that it goes too fast and you’ll miss thing you didn’t realize you would – because yeah that’s true too.
Instead, I think it’s important to just state it: parenting doesn’t get easy.
Here’s the thing about kids though – whatever is annoying you now? That will pass.
My mom spent most of my childhood repeating two mantras to me:
One was “Patience is a virtue.” (Sorry Mom, I’m still failing on that count.)
The other was “This too shall pass.” At the time I thought she was talking to me but now I’m not sure. Sometimes at least I think she was reminding herself. Regardless, I repeat it to myself often now.
Diapers don’t last forever.
Sweeping every time they eat will end too – or so I’m told, we aren’t there yet.
Some day they’ll move out and some quiet will return too.
also read: How to survive the first 3 years with twins
But just like everything in life there is good and bad about every age and while yes, it will pass – don’t wish this time away.
If you spend all of your days waiting for the hard bits to pass you miss the good.
In our house, the diapers are finally gone but now my kids cannot seem to remember to flush the toilet. Ever.
My kids make their own lunches but the result is a kitchen in utter chaos and me trying very hard not to yell “please close the refrigerator!”
My kids can tell me what’s wrong now, but they also tell me absolutely everything that is on their minds from 7 am until 7 pm.
My twins are not easy at 6, but it’s a different hard than 6 months.
It’s more of a mental exhaustion instead of a physical one. It’s much more chatty but there is less crying. It’s more letting go and a lot more worrying.
However, just like babies smell great, learn awesome things like how to suck their toes, and are adorable when they sleep – 6 year olds have good parts too.
And I guess for me that is the point. Easy isn’t coming. Easy parenting isn’t a thing. Raising a person was never intended to be a simple or brief task.
Stop waiting for the easy.
The bad things – they will pass. I promise they will eventually sleep. They will eventually learn to use the bathroom. They will eventually feed themselves and do some things without destroying your house.
I’m pretty sure mine will eventually master reading, learn to flush, and remember to close the refrigerator door.
But instead of waiting for those things to get easy, I’m enjoying the things that already are. I’m enjoying the moments when they learn a new word. I’m enjoying when they laugh at my jokes. I’m enjoying the moments when I get it right or when they do.
In between the mess and chaos and the noise there is good at any age. It’s not easy, but it’s life and it’s good.