Reject the Urge to Resent the Time Your Children Require of You When They Are No Longer Babies

We have been waiting for this, haven’t we?  The time when our children sleep.  The time when our children can occupy themselves.  The time when we can do more than feed, change, and hold babies.  Of course, we are sad to see the baby stage go, but we are ready for this life-stage change.  We have had our babies, and we’ve cared for them, too.  Because we gave it all we had when it was time to give it, we can move on to our next life station with a jig in our step (though the grieving of babyhood is still real).  Now we get to enjoy the coming years when our parenting role takes on a whole new meaning.  We are ready for this—we knew that it was coming.  Sometimes, though, there’s a day or a morning or a moment when one or all of our children slip back into a foregone time when they physically and emotionally need us (well, they’ll always need us, won’t they?).  We find ourselves interrupted a million times (something we know very well), or we realize that all we’ve done for the day is the culmination of holding and consoling and tending and mending.  It’s like were back in the newborn zone!  How can this be, we ask ourselves.  So when this happens (and it will—often when we are least expecting it), it is important that we embrace the opportunities presented to us to be the mom or the dad that our children need us to be in that moment—even if we think that they are beyond the stage of being baby-ish).  Otherwise, we may grow to resent the time that our children require of us when they are no longer babies.  Reject the urge to drive a wedge between your no-longer-a-baby child and your no-longer-have-babies self.  If our children need us (not talking about enabling, just in the general I-need-my-mom-or-dad-to-hold me sense), then it’s our job to be there for them—no matter how old or young they are.

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