A Reminder

Sometimes I need this reminder, so I wanted to share it in case others needed reminding, too.

By Maureen Fernandez, Content Director | Mar 30, 2016
A Reminder Header

Sometimes I need this reminder, so I wanted to share it in case others needed reminding, too. Here it is: everything changes.

When my kids were babies, I would get them on a sleep schedule and I’d feel totally content, until one day they just decided not to take a morning nap. Of course they did! They were changing every day – I knew that they wouldn’t take morning naps forever. But the day it happened, I had sort of forgotten. I had allowed myself to feel like I had the whole nap thing under control.

This is true in all aspects of parenting. The one I struggle with now is getting out of the house in the morning. I have a particularly slow-moving toddler who gets distracted and isn’t quite ready to face the world at 7:00am. So I’ve tried everything I can think of. We’ve had him get dressed before going downstairs to eat breakfast, we’ve had him eat breakfast before getting dressed, we’ve gone to bed earlier, we’ve tried games, setting a timer, racing his sister, and (though I would never admit it) bribery and consequences. The other day I was telling my co-workers that we had figured out a little “getting dressed” song – we had a song for pants, a song for his shirt, a song for socks. And it was working! I would sing the silly song, and he would get dressed. For a week or two, I really thought I had figured it out. Somehow I had cracked the code on my slow-moving toddler and we’d finally developed a system that would get us out the door on time in the mornings.

But, you can guess where this is going, everything changes. One day the song was no longer fun. He didn’t want me to sing it, and it didn’t motivate him to get dressed.

Sigh.

This is how parenting works – you figure out the way to get your kid to finish his homework, and then he moves up to a new grade, the work is harder, and he’s frustrated again. You get to know all of your daughter’s friend’s parents, and then she switches social groups. Just when you start to think you have things under control, it all changes.

There’s nothing we can do about this – it’s all part of being a kid, and by extension, being a parent. But the hard stuff changes, too. So I’m holding out hope that one day my toddler will wake up and decide he’s a morning person (one can dream!).

So if you’re in the trenches of parenting, just a friendly reminder: everything changes. We all just need to hang in there.