The Joys and Fears of Parenthood

The Joys and Fears of Parenthood

Being a parent is never easy, but no one warns you of the emotional onslaught parenthood brings.

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Sitting here today, I think of all the magical moments I have had and will hopefully continue to have with my children. Memories such as feeling them kick for the first time, holding them in my arms, their first smiles, learning to walk, and the list goes on. However, there are moments in life that no one warns you about before you become a parent. Those heart-stopping moments when they fall and slice their lip open so bad you think the blood could fill Norris Dam or even when they get much older and fall walking the dog and break their arm in half (yeah… that happened). Children are a mix of joy and fear for parents as we try to take nurture and care for them through their young lives, and even then, after that.

Parenthood is filled with the difficulties of navigating unknown territory, to begin with, but then we add our hopes, dreams, and fears for our children, and it becomes a big mess. Being a parent isn't easy, not everyone wants to/or can do it (there are an estimated 73.9 million children in the USA in 2019), and a lot of us have to face the reality of the risks and fears that come along with raising a child.

With loving someone so deeply, that often means doing things that, for lack of a better term, SUCK a lot of the time. For instance, I had to go to the pediatrician's office because my youngest had a possible ear infection and needed to be seen. That required me to hold him still long enough for the doctors to look into his ears, cleaning them out to see better, and all while he cried because he hates this part more than anything else he can imagine. No parent enjoys this, but because we love them, we will become the "bad guys" to keep them healthy and safe.

Behind closed doors, our children will never know the darkest moments when we cry because we don't know if what we are doing is "right," when we hold them still for the doctors' appointments even though it breaks our hearts, or when it's all we can do to make it through the day.

They will know us for the moments when we wish all we could do is take their pain away for them and love them a little more than we already did. They will make memories of the times we tuck them in a little more each night and add an extra Band-Aid on the non-existent cut that their stuffed animal has because it matches their own "boo-boo."

These small versions of ourselves bring light into our lives that could never be replaced, but nothing is ever easy either. As parents, we often fear the worst and hope for the best (even at the same time) and do the best that we can. The good memories will outshine the worst and, in the end, brighten even the darkest day.

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I'm The Girl Without A 'Friend Group'

And here's why I'm OK with it

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Little things remind me all the time.

For example, I'll be sitting in the lounge with the people on my floor, just talking about how everyone's days went. Someone will turn to someone else and ask something along the lines of, "When are we going to so-and-so's place tonight?" Sometimes it'll even be, "Are you ready to go to so-and-so's place now? Okay, we'll see you later, Taylor!"

It's little things like that, little things that remind me I don't have a "friend group." And it's been like that forever. I don't have the same people to keep me company 24 hours of the day, the same people to do absolutely everything with, and the same people to cling to like glue. I don't have a whole cast of characters to entertain me and care for me and support me. Sometimes, especially when it feels obvious to me, not having a "friend group" makes me feel like a waste of space. If I don't have more friends than I can count, what's the point in trying to make friends at all?

I can tell you that there is a point. As a matter of fact, just because I don't have a close-knit clique doesn't mean I don't have any friends. The friends I have come from all different walks of life, some are from my town back home and some are from across the country. I've known some of my friends for years, and others I've only known for a few months. It doesn't really matter where they come from, though. What matters is that the friends I have all entertain me, care for me, and support me. Just because I'm not in that "friend group" with all of them together doesn't mean that we can't be friends to each other.

Still, I hate avoiding sticking myself in a box, and I'm not afraid to seek out friendships. I've noticed that a lot of the people I see who consider themselves to be in a "friend group" don't really venture outside the pack very often. I've never had a pack to venture outside of, so I don't mind reaching out to new people whenever.

I'm not going to lie, when I hear people talking about all the fun they're going to have with their "friend group" over the weekend, part of me wishes I could be included in something like that. I do sometimes want to have the personality type that allows me to mesh perfectly into a clique. I couldn't tell you what it is about me, but there is some part of me that just happens to function better one-on-one with people.

I hated it all my life up until very recently, and that's because I've finally learned that not having a "friend group" is never going to be the same as not having friends.

SEE ALSO: To The Girls Who Float Between Friend Groups

Cover Image Credit: wordpress.com

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House Hunting At Its Finest

It's incredibly stressful and takes way too long!

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House hunting is hard. I thought at first it would be fun, exciting, and interesting. But now, I'm tired and bored and just want to give up.

I've been looking for a house for a month now and I knew it going in to it, it would take a while. I knew that I wouldn't just walk into the first house and be like, "this is it, this is the one".

But, when you look at 6-10 houses every time you search a day, it gets stressful and tiring.

When I started looking at houses it was because I was planning on getting a house with some friends to rent out for the next 3 years while at UCF. All because I didn't get a spot-on campus with the lottery, I got waitlisted. So, I need to look for housing to secure a place to live next fall.

Now, my dad wants to turn it into a small business. Buy a house, rent out the rooms for a reasonable price, cheaper than some apartments, and make a profit.

It sounds like a good plan.

But then you have to factor in: location and how far it is from campus, the price range in which you could make a profit, the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the price per square inch, the property taxes, if the house needs work or not, upgrades, improvement, parking availability, etc. The list just goes on and on.

It's hard to find the "perfect" house.

I want to be able to make it "home" for the next 3 years. I want to make it somewhere where I can hang out, have friends over, and love to live in.

Every time I walk into a new house, I automatically think, "what would I do to this room? Or that?". I think of furniture and décor. I think about how I would design it and make it ours.

I even made a Pinterest board, one for home décor and one for bedrooms.

I feel like I'm going overboard but I can't help it.

I get excited when it comes to the designing aspect, but my parents have to be so nit-picky. They came up over the weekend to search for houses with me and every time we walk into a house I hear: "the carpet is stained, needs to be removed", "the kitchen is outdated, needs to be upgraded", "the bathroom needs work", "the wall has a hole", "not enough bathrooms" and so much more.

It's not like I don't chime in with comments either.

I do put in a fair share of my personal opinions about the quality of the houses too.

But, at this point I wish we could just settle on something. Again, I know this takes time but I just get anxious.

So, we are going into the 5thweek and still haven't agreed on a house. My mom has her picks, my dad has his, and I have mine. And none of them overlap. Frankly, I don't get a "say" in what my parents chose since they will be purchasing the house. But, I get to live in it, my friends are the ones who will be paying them rent. So, I feel like my opinion matters. Whenever I ask questions or give input, they talk over me.

As if, I wasn't even there!

Yet, that is how the ball rolled. Wow, I'm borderline whining over here. It's not like I'm not grateful but, I wish I was valued as an adult helping in this situation.

Well thank you for coming to my "TED" talk! And reading about yet another annoying and trivial struggle of mine. I'll write again soon.

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