Carpe Diem?

in Essential Ramblings

Great perspective on “Carpe Diem Parenting” — so, so true.  Enjoy every second of parenting — except when you aren’t, because that’s ok too.

My response?

Today is my son’s 12th birthday and I am nostalgic for days when my biggest worry was whether he was going to nap so I could work for an hour, or whether we would get through the grocery store line without a melt down, or whether he was going to be forever sad that his favorite blankie was lost on vacation.  These are the things we worry about when they are little.  The days are slow and you slog through the moments.  You are tired and cranky and overwhelmed and messy.

But, the kids grow and the worries get bigger.  Will his teacher be nice to him on the first day of kindergarten, will he make friends, what should he wear for Halloween?  And now I worry…is he coming home mad at friends because they are bullying him or is it typical middle school stuff?  Will he ever date or will girls forever be calling him four eyes?  Will the friends he have start drinking or dating or causing trouble and when does that happen?  How do I protect him?  And I imagine as he reaches his teens it will be similar and add in –  are his friends driving around drunk?  Is tonight a night I’ll get a call that something has happened?  How do you sleep?  How do you let go?  I can’t imagine.

So, when the older ladies at the store or the older moms you know give you that “just you wait – enjoy them now” – look…I think that’s what they mean.  Enjoy the little worries, because little worries turn big and you won’t be able to control them by picking them up and putting them in a time out, the bribe of a lollipop won’t bring them safely into your arms.  So, Carpe Diem when you can.  IF you can.  Not every moment is a good one, but like the author, peek at them when they are quiet and sleeping at night, grab an extra snuggle when they offer it, or take an extra day for vacation instead of rushing back to pre-school.  It matters — for your now and for your future.  You don’t have to enjoy every second of parenting, because it is hard, and exhausting and even sticky, but try to steal those moments that are wonderful and lock them in your heart for those days that aren’t so wonderful.  That’s what carpe diem means to me.

And now I am off to wrap presents he doesn’t need, obsess about cupcakes, and decorate the living room to surprise him for when he gets home, because I just don’t know if I will get to do that when he is 13 or 15 or 19 because “I’m too big for that mom” is looming right around the nasty corner!  Carpe Diem Birthday style…


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