To A Parent
To A Parent….
What is sleep to a parent? I can tell you what it isn’t. It isn’t getting up six times a night with a three-year-old and a four-month-old. It isn’t staying up doing homework. It isn’t drinking coffee at 5 pm to pick your toddler up from childcare because if you didn’t, you’d be asleep by the time you got to the parking lot.
What are friends to a parent? Friends are not people who come over to drink and smoke the devils lettuce. Friends are not people you talk to all night long and binge watch Grey’s Anatomy with. Friends are, though, people you go over and have coffee with on a Tuesday morning at 7 am. Why 7 am? Because a lot of your parent friends have children who keep them awake all night as well. But by all means, if your friendships involve reefer smoke around your children I guess that’s alright. Whatever works for you.
What is taking a bath in peace and quiet? Well let’s break this question down…. What is taking a bath? Taking a bath involves a pint of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream and a glass of wine. Did I forget to mention this takes place at 2:25 am because it’s the only time you have a moment to yourself? Oh, that’s right. You probably don’t have young children. But you are probably thinking to yourself AMEN. Because you have been through this six or ten years ago! Maybe even 17!
But what is all of this to a parent? This is life. This is what we go through every day, day in and day out. It is perfectly acceptable to leave your laundry UNFOLDED in your basket at the end of a 24-hour shift as a new mom (or dad). It’s completely acceptable to drink a pint of coffee to function a day. I wouldn’t overdo it if you are breastfeeding, though. But it is also perfectly acceptable to drink a bottle of wine at 3 am. It is also acceptable to go to Wal-Mart in your pajamas on Wednesday at 5 pm because the baby ran out of wipes. We do a lot of crazy things as parents, but you know what isn’t crazy? Loving our children. Being active in our children’s lives as much as we can. Coloring in a pillow fort with your three-year-old before bedtime. Eating McDonald’s because you’re tired of cooking. It’s alright to just be. Don’t stress it. This too will pass.
Remember to hug your parent, and say thank you. Because there are a lot of parents out there who aren’t as lucky as I am to watch my girls grow up. Those are the working parents. And they are even more of a hero than the Stay-At-Home-Parent is. Thank your parent.