November 27, 2013

the truth about the speed of time as a parent

As I mentioned before, my baby just turned one.

Photo credit: Kaela Salaz photography

I have so many people in my life- from family and friends, to even my (wonderful) pediatrician- telling me how quickly it happened. I nod in agreement, but in reality I think that is a funny statement. You know why?

Because it didn't happen that quickly. It happened in one year.

Photo credit: Marci B photography

More experienced parents seem to be constantly telling me how I better be savoring this time because:

"You'll blink and they will be in kindergarten."
"Time will fly by."
"They grow up so fast."
"Tomorrow they will be graduating from high school."

But I'm going to let you in on a little secret: time does not go by any faster because you have children.

The sun still rises and sets in twenty-four hour patterns, the Earth is not quickening its orbit, and there are still three hundred and sixty-five days in a year.

I hope that is a little bit of a relief for you, because as simple as it sounds, at times we start to believe that time actually does seem to be going at a quicker pace and maybe we are wasting it, not soaking it up like we should be. Of course, the sweet grandma at the grocery store telling us that it seemed as if her fifty-two-year-old was five years old yesterday is not intending to cause us anxiety, but sometimes it happens anyway. Not too long ago I had a friend tell me that she was genuinely stressed out about the rapid pace at which her children seem to be aging. It made me so sad for her!

Dwelling on the speed of time, or apparent speed of time, is not the answer. I believe the answer is to embrace it.

Embrace the moment you are in right now with your children- even if it's difficult and you want to move past it, even if you miss the stage they have grown out of, whether the clock hands seem to be spinning furiously or at a stand still. As we dive into the holidays, enjoy your time with your family, relish every second.

And remember, no matter how old your children will get and how much time passes, they will always need you to be their parent.

Here's to living in the moment,

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