No, I’m not talking about Christmas. I’m talking about this season I’m currently in – raising a young child – and all that includes.
This is the season of teething necklaces instead of pretty pearls, staying home evenings instead of game nights with friends, more of dinner on the floor than in our stomachs. This is the season of sweeping up crumbs from the floor on a daily basis, walks pushing a stroller instead of leisurely jogs, online conversations with moms across the country instead of phone calls with as-of-yet childless friends from high school.
I know life in general, and parenting in particular, has innumerable stages and seasons. None last forever, and I’m not complaining or wishing this one away.
But this is not the season of helping friends renovate their new homes, or long sister chats late into the night, or going shopping just for fun. Sometime I miss those moments; I miss being available to those that might want our help or attention. We’ve had to say no to many opportunities – from long-term commitments to dinner invites – knowing we had to keep our focus on our little family.
This is the season of staying home evenings so our toddler is in bed on time, of drive-through everything possible to avoid car seat transitions, of planning the day around naps, of conversations involving poop consistency and food intake.
Eventually, I’ll be able to have an uninterrupted conversation while my daughter plays, not needing my attention every 45 seconds. Eventually, my husband and I will go to the movies while our child(ren) spend the evening with friends. Eventually, we won’t have to pick up a hundred toys in the evening after she’s gone to bed.
We’re in the midst of toddler life now, and though the seasons ahead both excite and scare me, we’ll take this one day at a time.
What season of parenting has been your favorite so far?