On Meagan: Madewell overalls; Matisse fringe boots; Top, old (similar.)
On Molly: Target overalls; Minnetonka boots.
Perhaps it’s the act of raising them, toiling day in and day out from day one, that does it? It’s every diaper changed, every night spent teaching them to sleep, the tears at 2am, to the temper tantrums and extreme vigilance needed to keep a two year old from constantly being in danger. The hard years ARE hard, but they go by fast (which I didn’t feel at the time!) All of a sudden it gets good, really good. You go from barely surviving each day, to waking up happy to see their faces and enjoy their company (because I can sleep in now, YAY!) They become your sidekicks, the people you most want to spend your day with. I love hearing my daughter talk about her day and how she problem solved an issue with a friend, or teaching my son that he can have painted nails, as long as he is comfortable with himself and his choice.
These people I’m raising are just great people, we have in depth conversations and I can see who they will become someday. They aren’t extremely moldable toddlers and volatile four year olds anymore. And I love it. They make me laugh with their quick wit, and drive me nuts with mood swings. The problems of the past, like keeping them from falling down the stairs or ingesting laundry pods, are gone. Now I worry about them being excluded at school, being bullied, not being prepared if a stranger approaches them, what they can say if someone tries to talk them into something bad, or how I’m going to get through math homework. (What’s up with multiplication in Second grade?) The problems and worries are still there, they’re just different.
I find that I just really love where we are right now, and I can see glimpses of how it will be as they age. My role as their mother will change. I’ll never be their friend as they grow up, I am their parent and the person who is in charge of their well being, but I know we will get there someday. I plan to push them to be their best, I hope to be their confidant and their safe place to land. I want to see them shine and teach them how to be responsible adults. I want them to be kind, always. That’s my biggest hope. And happy! Whatever brings that happiness, I am behind 100%. These kids, they have the whole world at their feet and I am so honored to be their mother.
So yes, it does get better. I promise that! I don’t worry about the stuff I used to worry about. I get to sit with them on a Saturday night and enjoy a nice meal at a restaurant. I can see them order politely and sit through dinner without cleaning up after them or rushing out. We can enjoy the things around us more, instead of worrying about naps and feeding schedules and the like. While I look back fondly at that time (as we all do of hard times gone by), I am so grateful to have them as they are right now. I don’t know what the future brings, but I do know that it gets better and better as time goes on, and I look forward each second I get to be their mother.