- ORIGINALLY POSTED MAY 2011 -
Now this may seem like a negative post to begin Mother’s Day with but it’s really not.
You see, I think that there are 3 major ‘fibs’ told to new moms that don’t help in preparing them for motherhood.
The first….. 9 months. A pregnancy is 9 months/40 weeks. Who did the calculations on that? On whose calendar do 40 weeks equal 9 months? More like 9 1/2-10 months!
The second….. ‘terrible twos’. Now why does everyone prepare you for the ‘terrible twos’ when the true terror transformation seems to occur at three?? I have yet to meet a mom that’s been through both agree that age two was more of a challenge than age three! When I meet a mom with a two year old that utters the words “terrible twos” I just can’t bring myself to say “just wait until he/she hits three!!” (and don’t even mention the teen years!! yikes!)
Now the first two fibs are comical in their own way. However, the third, in my opinion, is the one that leaves a new mom the most unprepared. It’s the worst one.
“It goes by fast.”
I remember at one point in my pregnancy with my first, my daughter Devan, when I looked at my husband and said “I swear if ONE MORE PERSON says ‘enjoy every minute…IT GOES BY FAST’ I might scream!”. I wanted to say “I know, I know…’it goes by fast’” to everyone before they had a chance to say it to me.
At the time I just didn’t realize that it couldn’t be said enough and it is truly the biggest lie and understatement ever. There isn’t a word, or a phrase, or any type of warning that can prepare you for just how fast it goes by.
You blink….really, just a blink…. and….
….instead of cradling them in your arms you’re looking up at them towering over you
….crayon drawings and handpainted masterpieces become newspaper clippings of their school sports
….you stop having to introduce them and remind them to say things like ‘please, thank you and nice to meet you’ and instead watch them confidently and politely introduce themselves and engage in a conversation
….you move from taking off training wheels to signing them up for driver’s ed
….instead of celebrating every wiggly tooth you celebrate the day the braces come off
The list goes on and on and on….and on.
And nothing…ABSOLUTELY NOTHING….can prepare you for just how fast it goes by.
I’m not ready.
I wish I could stop time. No, actually I wish I could rewind. I love who my kids are right now but I so miss carrying them on my hip or spinning them around in circles while they pretend they can fly. And I can’t seem to reconcile the fact that in just a few short years they’ll start to head off on their own. It’s what sends me into their rooms at night just to stare and smile at them while they are sleeping like I’ve done since they day they each were born. It’s the reason I’ll choose a hockey game, lacrosse game, etc….over anything else. It’s why I love every minute I spend with them.
I want to freeze every single moment because ‘it goes by fast’ just isn’t true. It’s so, so much faster than that.
We’ve been going to Walt Disney World for years. We all love it and we have so many great memories from our trips there. The very first time we went was a big surprise for the kids. We didn’t tell them a thing until we were headed to the airport. There have been many trips since that first one and, of course, each year they are a little older and there are different experiences (and challenges!).
This year, however, was the first year that, quite literally, stopped me in my tracks. I happened to be walking behind them and realized that neither my husband nor I were holding any hands or watching to make sure no one wandered off. We weren’t pushing any strollers or carrying sippy cups.
It made me smile and made me sad all at the same time….
It even made me willing to get in a few photos myself!
So, a big HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY to all moms out there. Enjoy it!
Have fun, spend time together and soak in every single minute. And don’t forget ….. ’it goes by fast’ is a giant lie.
It’s so much faster than that.
UPDATED 5/12/2013 to add March 2013 family photo (after Devan’s hockey team won the Regional Championship):
And the growing up continues. I’m now officially the shortest member of our family (by a lot!)….