I’ve heard it alluded to a million times; it’s the things that drive you the most crazy about someone that you will miss the most when they are gone. I find I have to remind myself of that on a regular basis especially on the days when I am tried and tired, when I’m frazzled and fried, when all I want is a little order, peace, quiet and cooperation. You’re a parent, you know what I mean. It can be really hard to find the kind of patience you need to just let it go when every little thing pushes your buttons, sets you off, makes you crazy.
I often get worked up when my kids act super-silly. When they’re doing the “cirque-du-soleil” acrobatics in the living room or when they’re singing the most dramatic Les Miserable songs at the top of their lungs or when they’re incessantly and ridiculously questioning Siri and squealing uncontrollably with the answers.
I get short with a tween who is constant asking for snacks and sleepovers and sweets. I get fed up with the late nights of an over-scheduled teen who is chronically tired but never gets enough sleep. I say no a lot and shush them and feel like I’m constantly trying to keep a lid on everything and everybody, just for my own sanity. And yet, every once in a while I get tired of hearing my own nagging mama voice and I realize that, as my Grandmother often says, this too shall pass. And when I’m clear enough to actually squelch my reprimands I remind myself instead that I will miss all of this when they’re gone.
I try to imagine what it will be like when my teenager goes off to college and I’ve only got one child at home. It will be much more quiet and peaceful and not nearly as lively. And I know, deeply and truly that I will miss the sillies. I will miss singing and squealing and circle du soleil. I will miss pulling down sheets at midnight begging my teen to get to bed and rubbing her back for five more minutes. I will even miss the tears my daughter sheds when I travel because I do realize that soon enough it will be me that aches each time they leave.
In quiet, pensive moments like this when everyone’s asleep and I am thinking of these things I am reminded to bite my tongue more often, and to appreciate all of it; the crazy, chaotic absurdity that is family life because I know that long before I’m ready, I will have to begin to let it go.
For more about Tracey and how she elevates the everyday, visit her at traceyclark.com.
For the story about how she and her teen got here, take a peek at their first post at Reframed.
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