Let’s face it…being a mom is hard work. It’s labor intensive (more so physically, when the kids are young, and emotionally when the kids are older).
I remember when my two girls were much younger (I had one in diapers and one very super-charged, hyper six year old), and I kept thinking: “When will I come out of this mountain of diapers and toys?” Those are the tough days, when you can’t see the end of the tunnel and every day looks the same (wake up, change diaper, feed, put to sleep, put yourself to sleep, do the laundry, work, cook dinner, listen to your older kid, talk to your husband – nicely-start all over again the next day). And I left out some important other-tasks that we moms do, too. Like break up fights between our kids, wipe away the tears, read them books or play games with them- you know, the bonus stuff we don’t really have to do, but we just do it…just because.
It’s in those moments I have to think that although the end of the tunnel seems a long way off, there is definitely an end. You just keep on truckin’ day after day, and before long you’re halfway through, then completely through the tunnel. Tunnels are similar to life stages. Looking back, can you remember the exact details of the days you’ve groaned your way through diaper duty- especially if these events happened at least five years ago or more?
The point is, like all tunnels, life stages eventually come to an end. They seem laboriously long and never-ending so long as you’re inside trying to find your way out. But once you’re out, you immediately transition into a new stage. Welcome to a brand new tunnel!
The beauty of tunnels are that you can move away from feeling trapped into enjoying your journey through the end. I know it’s hard work. I know, I know. And sometimes we moms feel unappreciated. I know that too. But shifting our mindset to warrior mode allows us see past the here and now and into the “end of the tunnel” future…which, sometimes sadly enough, happens much sooner than we expect.
Looking back, I remember wanting to leave the diapers behind in a big hurry and scuttle through to late toddlerhood. Then with the temper tantrums I could not wait until my daughter could her express herself well enough to actually talk and tell me what’s wrong instead of scream. Now? She’s four, and she talks more than we could ever imagine. A favorite buzzword of mine (and my husband’s) in public, especially in small places and where it’s very quiet is…”Shhhhhhhhh!”
And my oldest, who went from bubbly six year old to sultry ten year old has gone through her metamorphosis nearly overnight as well. Time really does change all things. The stages you dread the most will be over before you know it.
So, take your time getting through the tunnel. It won’t last very long.