Hello mothers. I come in peace.
No judgements. No agenda. No advice on potty training or vaccinating or how to get your toddler to stop peeing in the house plants.
I know just as little as you do, which has actually ended up being quite revealing. You can read all about it in my new book, “Honestly, You Just Wait It Out.”
Because that’s what you do. You wait and wait and wait, and then one day they stop throwing peanut butter sandwiches on the kitchen floor and your google searches on child personality disorders seem a bit dramatic.
It is so startling when your precious, newborn baby suddenly becomes a full blown child. It sneaks up on you at first; a small tantrum in the Target parking lot, minor hysteria over the inconsistency of socks. Then all of a sudden they are pointing their finger, stomping their feet, and throwing all their raisins into the toilet. Sometimes I feel like, who invited this guy to the party? I am not cleaning up after this guy.
I know there is a lot of great stuff out there about how you’re supposed to carpe diem or not carpe diem or how we’re supposed to stop yelling or cut ourselves a break.
Here is what I want to say to you today:
It gets better! Those nuggets eventually do grow up enough to communicate that they do or do not want the red crayon. One day you will wake up and realize you can have a whole conversation and maybe even clean the kitchen without someone standing in the dishwasher. And restaurants? Let me tell you about restaurants. Suddenly going out to eat becomes less like crying in the parking lot and more like eating your chicken sandwich with two hands. I cannot overemphasize this small and important joy.
It gets worse! Oh, did you think parenting was going to get easier? Wishing away the toddler years is easy when you’re getting kicked in the mouth trying to put on their shoes. Unfortunately every stage of parenthood has its pros and cons. I am learning the hard way that you will never enjoy parenting if you are always wishing they were older. Kids will forever and always be annoying. It just appears in different forms. If you’re feeling despondent, remember the restaurant thing and the possibility of summer camp.
Friends help. Are you so tired of hearing how it takes a village? I remember thinking, “A village sounds great, but I’m too tired to make small talk about The Bachelor.” Honey these are the golden years, but you will drown without help. Single moms, married moms, working moms, stay at home moms–everyone needs a buddy who says, “This is normal” or “Yes, me too” or “You get the wine, I’ll bring the pizza.” Suffer through the small talk to find your mom soul mate. She is out there. Just a girl, standing in front of another girl, asking for a babysitting swap.
And finally, if you are wondering if your two-year-old will ever stop pooping in his underwear or if your five-year-old will stop screaming about the injustices of sleep, the answer is yes. Definitely yes.
Honestly. You just wait it out.
Keep on keeping on.