By: Crystal Alba
“Hold them tight. They grow in a blink of an eye.”
I’ve heard it many times when I first had my oldest daughter. After venting about being tired or wanting more alone time, I would get the phrase thrown at me (or at least it felt like it). I would get annoyed hearing it, especially from my own mother. I took it in a way that made me feel judged for venting on stressful moments. I felt misunderstood, but the phrase didn’t really hit me until later.
Snapchat and their memories
I swear social media platforms invented this feature to mess with you. Especially moms. Like I was doing just fine going about my day. Drinking my coffee, hair semi- done, managed to get some mascara on- when I get a notification that I have a memory from 4 years ago.
*immediately cries streaks of mascara from watching a video of my now 5 year old taking her first steps and saying “mama”.
What does she call me now you ask? MOM. not mommy, not mama, not mami.- just mom.
She gets embarrassed of me now! When did that happen? I used to be the grand prize at show and tell.
After I collect myself (and send my husband the same memory to crush his heart too), I asked myself, “How TF did this happen so fast?”
It felt like just yesterday we were pushing a stroller in the park as a fresh new family.
You know the feeling? You stroll down the street with your baby and you spot another family with a baby, make eye contact and feel an instant bond so you exchange a smile. BECAUSE WE ARE PART OF THE SAME CLUB NOW!
Unfortunately, the parts of the club that they don’t mention is that you spend most of your time raising your child that you don’t realize your child is growing up.
Let’s digest this, shall we?
We have to feed them, bathe them, discipline them, show them right from wrong, play with them. It becomes routine. Then we find that we need our own routine. We start to look for things that will help US wind down and reach our goals/ aspirations because damn it, we deserve things too! Oh yeah, then if we pile in the stress of work, personal life- voila, before you know it, time flew because you were keeping yourself busy!
Congratulations, you now have a child who can do everything on their own, or so they say.
If we could find a way to keep our children little forever, trust me, I’d do it (maybe).
Why Snapchat came in as a wakeup call
My kids are young, COVID has made me stay home, we are ALL home. I took time for myself but have I really made time for my daughter?
Not cook for her. Not clean for her. Not go to work to make money and support her.
Have I sat down to just see her play? Run around and get dirty, jump on the trampoline, bury a time capsule and just be a kid with her?
Sure, the house may not look organized and perfect all the time, this isn’t instagram land. Let’s be honest, I have kids that like to play with their toys.
I’ll admit, I used to be the one that wanted everything picked up and cleaned up after “Playtime”.
But I soon realized that getting on my daughter to clean up was:
1) making her not want to play with her toys.
2) causing stress for myself
3) wasting time for the both of us
So what did I do instead?
I lived life with her!
I played WITH her. Once she saw that I could get down with Anna and Elsa too, I instantly became part of the cool club again, Her cool club. And honestly? It’s the only club I ever want to be a part of.
Spending time with her one on one vs. me telling her to do things has made our bond stronger. She understands me, I understand her.
What once drove my anxiety, now calms my nerves. To see her play or her ask me to play means I’m soaking up all the time I can with her.
Kids don’t know how to communicate just yet. (Heck, some adults don’t know either) Most of the time, playtime with you is their innocent way of communicating .
Cheers To That!
I guess the fact of the matter is that life just happens.
The mess? It can get picked up. You can get new toys if they break or get lost.
Time with your kids? That can’t be replaced. Time is precious, my friends!
Thanks for tuning in! Comment below on your fond memories with your little ones!
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