My Thoughts on “Don’t Carpe Diem”

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My sister, a fellow mommy of a toddler in the trenches, forwarded an article on HuffPost Parents a couple months ago with two words: GOOD READ. In CAPS. She never forwards me articles so I was intrigued.

The article obviously struck a chord with mamas all over, as it has been shared and shared again, so I am sure many of you have read it already, and if you have, it is worth reading again.

But for those who haven’t, I wanted to write about this article today because her words have stayed with me.  And because the article stirred up so many emotions in me, I also felt compelled to share my thoughts on “Don’t Carpe Diem.”

At first I was intrigued by the title. I am sort of a “Carpe Diem~glass half full~positive” kind of gal, so I couldn’t see myself totally agreeing with whatever was going to come next.

But after I read it, through a mixture of emotions including laughter and tears, I immediately wanted to share with moms everywhere so I posted it to Facebook, where one of my friends so aptly commented, “AAAAAAAMMMMMMEN!”

Which is exactly how I felt.

One of my biggest challenges as a mother has been dealing with guilt. Now days, not only is there the pressure to be enjoying every moment, but we also have the pressure of  “being present.”

I know we have all heard we should ditch the dishes for the moment, forget the laundry, turn off the devices, and get down on the living room floor to play with our kids because, as we have been told over and over again, “IT GOES SO FAST.  ENJOY EVERY MOMENT.

But to those people I have often wanted to scream, then WHO is going to do my dishes and fold the laundry?? Many days I feel so much pressure I feel torn. When I am doing the dishes, I feel guilty I am not playing with my kids, and when I am playing with my kids, I often feel guilty that I should be doing the dishes. Sometimes I feel like I just can’t win! 

When I read her article, I didn’t feel alone. And I feel like us moms need to give ourselves one monumental break! 

Like my cousin once said to me about parenting little ones, “The years go by fast, but the days are long.

This week, I registered my youngest daughter for three mornings of preschool starting in September. Some have said, “Are you sentimental that your youngest is growing up and will be going to preschool?”

But, if I am being honest, after putting in 6 years of juggling the stay-at-home and also work-from-home gig, inside I feel ECSTATIC that she will start preschool in the fall and I am not feeling misty or sentimental in the least.  I feel READY.

Yes, she is growing up, but I am ready to graduate to the next phase. I have had to work on accepting the fact that feeling this way is OK without the guilt.  

I can’t end this post without talking about the author’s views on time. Please read it all the way through, because her words on time are such a great reminder at the end.

The Chronos time is REAL time. The “I am most certainly not enjoying this moment/phase/long afternoon of parenting time.” And can be hard, and exhausting. There is no way around it. A lot of days I am just doing the best I can, and if I make it through the day without completely losing it, that is a success.

The Kairos moments are “I AM ENJOYING THIS MOMENT” time.

If it weren’t for those, I honestly don’t know how parents could make it through.  Many days it’s like running a marathon, and the Kairos moments are the ones when you spot a friend or family member cheering you on from the sidelines, the Kairos moments of unparalleled joy and overwhelming love are what give me that burst of energy to push on.

The cute sayings, the small victories, the snuggles, the laughs, those magic moments that make you want to SCREAM “it is all SOOOOOOOOO worth it! Being a mom is the best thing in the entire universe.” I thank God for those moments, and in those moments, I can look parenting in the eye and say, I AM ENJOYING THIS TO THE FULLEST.

Thing is, it’s just not EVERY moment.

So, if you couldn’t tell, I loved this article. It was honest and raw and forgiving and real and I too wanted to jump through my screen and give Glennon a huge high five and say, “AMEN SISTER!”

You gotta read it. Click here if you haven’t already.

And I can’t wait to hear your thoughts!

XOXO

 

7 Comments

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7
  1. 1
    Lisa says:

    Well said Jen. I feel exactly the same way. I didn’t cry the first day of kinder because I would MISS Sarah, I cried because she’s all grown up and watching her be independent and walk off to that classroom made me feel a mixture of emotions, none of which was sadness of missing her for those few hours. I practically skipped to my car knowing that I had a few hours to myself! Next year Stevie will be in kinder, and guess what, I can NOT wait!!!

    • 2
      Jen says:

      I was the same way – I got misty when Emma walked into her Kindergarten class – but it was a misty proud that she was growing up and moving up to the next phase of her life.

      I feel the same way about Morgan, not misty going to miss her, but misty excited and proud that she is going on to experience preschool.

      Thanks for your comment, and for the Facebook AMMMEEENNN! so long ago!

      xo

  2. 3
    elle e says:

    thanks for sharing! AMEN!!!

  3. 4
    Christina says:

    Amazing article! I am in the same phase as you Jen. My son will be off to preschool in the Fall and my daughter in Kinder. I have struggled with my true feelings and wondered if I am “normal”. I can’t wait to have some time to myself! Granted, it will be either cleaning the house, preparing dinner, or catching up on the kids photo albums…but hey, I’ll take it! Funny thing is, I am contemplating baby #3…which throws all that “me time” out the window. Soooo

  4. 5
    Christina says:

    Oops! I meant to say…thank you for sharing this article. I will be looking forward to my Kairos moments today. 🙂

  5. 6
    Erin says:

    Thank you for posting. It’s articles like this that make us feel normal!

  6. 7
    Annika Chase says:

    Thank you for sharing this. Had not seen before and it is just perfect.

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