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You’re Gonna Miss This

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Image by D. Sharon Pruitt

The following is a guest post by Amanda from Mommy's Idea Book.
  • Oh, I’ll be so glad when I don’t have to deal with bottles any more.
  • I just wish he was potty-trained and out of these diapers, then I wouldn’t have to lug this diaper bag around any more.
  • It’ll be nice to finally get a break once the kids get in school.
  • Surely things will be easier once she gets older and can do some things for herself.

Do any of these lines sound familiar? Have you ever thought or said any of these things?

I’ll be the first to admit, I’ve thought or said all these things at one point or another.

After my son was born almost six years ago, I found myself constantly wishing he would grow out of one stage and into another, thinking things would be easier once he reached the next stage. I was a tired and sometimes frustrated new mom just trying to survive day to day with a new baby.

What I didn’t realize is I was inadvertently wishing our lives away by focusing on the irritating parts of each stage of his life rather than on the enjoyable and memorable parts of each stage.

Once I recognized how fast my little boy was actually growing up and just how short each segment of his life really is I felt guilty for wishing the time away. I knew it was imperative I put my mind on the positive aspects of his life, at every stage, rather than the negative ones.

So, that being said, how do we learn to focus on the positive instead of the negative?

  1. Retrace our steps - Realizing our child will not stay young for very long is the first step to learning to live in the present and focus on the positives of each stage of their life. If we take a moment and look back to when our child was only a few months old, we will probably all remember thinking it took forever for him to stop waking up every two or three hours during the night. However, we can probably also look back and see how quickly the time actually flew by. By doing this, we can get an idea of just how short our time with our little ones really is.
  1. Recognize our misconceptions - Sometimes, we parents fool ourselves into thinking if we can just get past this stage, everything will be peachy. Unfortunately, no matter the stage of our child’s life, there will always be less than pleasurable aspects. So by wishing one stage is over to get on to the next stage is really not accomplishing anything. In other words, each new stage will bring its own problems with it, so we might as well accept them and find happiness despite of them.
  1. Rethink our priorities - It’s so easy to get caught up in having a spotless house or maintaining various commitments to the point we end up getting annoyed over the little things our children do or don’t do that are just part of being a kid. As a result, we try to “grow them up” too quickly, so they will fit into our pre-child lifestyle instead of reformatting our lifestyle to include our children. If unnecessary commitments and a squeaky clean house are constantly causing us to wish our kids were older so they could do more for themselves, it’s time to reassess our priorities. To put it plain, we’ll always have a house to clean and there will always be commitments to make, but our kids won’t always be kids.

As I began writing this article, I was reminded of a country music video my dad wanted me to watch a while back. Now, I don’t usually listen to country, but he said I really needed to see it. It was called “You’re Gonna Miss This” and sung by Trace Adkins.

I ended up crying through the whole video. The song talks about the stages of life we go through, from having young children to seeing them grow into adults and all the things we’ll miss about their childhood once they’re grown.

I’m glad I had the opportunity to watch this video while my kids are still really young because it changed my perspective on living each day to the fullest with them. I realized just how fleeting these times are in our lives.

Just ask an older mother or father and they’ll tell you time goes by in the blink of an eye. I want to cherish the good and the bad so I’ll be able to look back and know I didn’t wish away any of the time with my kids.

What about you? Are you wishing away precious time - days, weeks, months, or even years? Or are you living each day accepting and loving that precious time, good or not so good?

Amanda is a full-time mom to a five year old son and a two year old daughter, as well as a wife of almost 11 years. In addition, she blogs at Mommy’s Idea Book, a blog devoted to sharing information, tips and encouragement with other moms, wives and homemakers. She enjoys reading, cooking and spending time with her family.


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