I was sitting drinking my morning coffee in a silent house this Sunday morning, and realized suddenly that it was already after 7am, and everyone was still sleeping. This is not usual, as my little twin B has been rising early (like 6am is a sleep-in early) his entire life. The silence was a really beautiful thing to me. It signified a turning point, not only for the development of my sons, who are obviously growing, and busier than they used to be, but also for me and my husband. We are about to have that "time" to ourselves again that we have been missing since our oldest son first made his beautiful entrance into the world. The rhythm of our home is changing.
This is the "lull" before the sleepless, worrisome teen years arrive.
I used to surf recreationally (no, I am not super cool, but I did try to be for a while), and one of the things you get used to is that waves come in sets, and then there is usually a lull. Those lulls are your rest time, and time to get yourself back together. Or to get the water out of your lungs before the next set comes. If you're not ready, you will either miss the wave or you will get tumbled, smashed and spit out the other side gagging for life.
The lulls are a time to recoup, reassess, and revise our parenting strategies. Or just to rest.
I don't know how I feel about getting through that last set of "waves" now. I might actually be a little sad (just a little though...as most of you know I have been WAITING DESPERATELY for some quiet time, and I know there's more waves coming).
We just started to get the hang of parenting babies, then they were toddlers, then I figured out preschoolers and now they are in grade school.
I remember when the twins were newborns, and my oldest was just a toddler, and I could never find the time for anything - showers, a chat on the phone with a friend. It felt like I was never going to have the energy to read a book before bed again. I would get about three words into the first chapter and just pass out from exhaustion.
That time for myself is coming back now, but it feels like there is a cost. I am losing time with my children, as they go out into the world, to school, to friends' houses, to the park to ride their bikes. It's not like they are in college yet, and don't get me wrong, our regular days are still filled with utter chaos. Let's not forget there are three little boys in my house (one with ADHD), plus a puppy (boy) and a husband (boy). It's just that more often than not, the conversation with my 7-year-old goes like this:
"No Mom, can we go by ourselves?...You stay in the yard and garden or read a book or something..."
"But I don't mind coming, are you sure?" ...
"We can do it Mom, it's going to be fine. We are big now."
And I need to embrace it, because it's the natural progression for our family. It is reclaimed freedom for me, and new-found freedom for my babies. I used to wonder if I would ever have a fresh, hot, newly poured cup of coffee (you busy parents know what I mean). And I realized this Sunday morning, that my years of hot coffee are back.
I'm not entirely sure how I feel about it, but man, a cup of hot coffee in a silent house a beautiful thing!
Enjoy your quiet time and check out www.sillysouls.com for the latest in hilarious newborn and toddler clothing and footwear!
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