There is no denying that parenthood can be a frustrated, exhausting time. There are those days when we just can’t muster the excitement or the patience to face another childhood crisis. I often have friends and others who share with me their exasperation over certain ages and stages and confess that they just don’t know how they are going to get through another day, week, sickness, birthday party, etc. All I can figure to tell them is that from my perspective here at the end of nearly two decades of parenting is that childhood passes, everything is temporary, and even though it seems like it will never end…it will.
Phases, stages, colds, temper tantrums, moods, etc. all pass. I can remember times when all three of mine were little and we were trapped indoors during a freezing Midwestern winter and everyone took turns getting sick—continuously, one after the other. I remember feeling like my life had been reduced to constant, messy caretaking and I would never see the light of day again. I did. The children got well, they got older, winter became spring and then summer, we don’t even live in the Midwest any longer. Things change and just remembering that can help us parents weather some of the most relentless stages.
Childhood doesn’t always seem like it is brief when you are in the midst of raising a child—especially if you are just starting out. It is, though! All those elders who tell you to enjoy it while you can are trying to give you snippets of wisdom to tide you over when the going gets tough. You will get your life back, not to mention your living room and your bathroom and your kitchen. Childhood passes and there are new stages and challenges. Hang in there, it really is all temporary!