Pull-ups, Pacifiers And Destiny

Pull-ups, Pacifiers And Destiny

Figuring out the hidden lessons in parenting.
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Fleeting moments, much like shooting stars, are what life is made of. It is impossible to catch them all, no brain capable of remembering every detail and not enough time in the world to relive them. Parenting is only a speck, only one fleeting moment out of our short lives. Children are only children for so long. There are only so many lessons a parent can teach a child and only so many lessons a child can learn. Whether you believe in God or another higher power, you were born equipped with a specific life plan, tailored specifically to you - otherwise known as "destiny."

Throughout time, you are given the knowledge to be equipped with certain lessons to teach, certain lessons to learn and certain lessons to relive over and over again. Some of these lessons are easy, like learning how to ride a bike or how to tie your shoes. Those lessons are almost never forgotten. Some lessons are much deeper, more evolved and over thought, like when to ask for help. Then there are some of these lessons you relive, time and time again. These are lessons in humility.

As a parent, I hate to admit failure. I hate to admit that sometimes I don't meet certain goals I set for myself or our children. Our three-year-old is still in pull ups despite the fact she was potty trained over six months ago. Our almost two-year-old is now taking a pacifier and I'm not 100 percent sure why. These are failures in my eyes. Failures that I live with every day. These failures are lessons in humility. While I dwell on the fact that I feel like I'll be sending our oldest off to college with pull ups in her bag and trying to pry a pacifier out of a teenager’s mouth, I am also humbled.

For whatever reason, I was given the chance to be a parent. I was trusted by God, by a higher power and I was given a child. Not just one child, but two. Yes, our three-year-old is in pull ups still. Yes, our almost two-year-old is now using a pacifier. These aren’t really failures though, are they? After looking back and reevaluating everything I have ever believed in, everything I have ever promoted, I fall back on destiny. Maybe our three-year-old is still in pull ups because I’m too afraid to let her go. Maybe our two-year-old is now taking a pacifier because she can sense the little changes that are happening so fast. These changes are all a part of growing up and maybe that’s what I am truly afraid of.

I am not afraid of failure. I am not afraid to ask for help. I am afraid of time. My biggest problems right now are the pull ups and pacifiers. Those problems are temporary and can be controlled. In a few years, my problems are going to be much bigger, much more worrisome and they will keep me up at night. The worst part about those problems is that they aren’t always going to be something that I, as a mom, can fix. Moms can’t fix broken hearts. They can’t fix friendships gone south. Moms can’t make all the hard decisions in her children's lives.

This is where, I, as a parent have lessons to learn. I must suck it up, put my big girl panties on, and learn to let go. For the first time, I need to let our children be in control. I must learn to trust our three year old enough to let her wear big girl panties without scolding her if she has an accident. I must learn how to allow our youngest to fully take in what it means to be a big girl and completely take the pacifiers away. I must learn to have faith in all of the lessons I have instilled in our children so far and have faith that everything is going be okay.

I must learn to appreciate these fleeting moments because that’s all they are. Our wonderful children are asleep in their beds under our roof right now. One day they will be under a different roof, perhaps in a different state, wherever their destiny takes them. For now, I just need to try to catch every moment, try to remember every detail of their sweet little faces, and try to relive all of these moments over and over again. There is only so much time and so many opportunities to be a shooting star in our children's lives.

Cover Image Credit: Flickr

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Dear Mom, Now That I'm Older

A letter to the woman who made me the woman I am today.
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Dear Mom,

Now that I'm older, I definitely appreciate you a lot more than I did as a kid. I appreciate the little things, from the random text messages to constantly tagging me on Facebook in your "funny" photos and sending me pins of stuff I like on Pinterest. Now that I'm older, I can look back and realize that everything I am is all because of you. You've made me strong but realize it's okay to cry. You've shown me how a mother gives everything to her children to give them a better life than she had, even when she's left with nothing. And, most importantly you've taught me to never give up and without this, I would not be where I am today.

Mom, now that I'm older, I realize that you're the best friend I'm ever going to have. You cheer me on when I try new things and support me in deciding to be whatever person I want to be. Thank you for never telling me I can't do something and helping me figure out ways to be the best woman I can be. Your love for me is unconditional. They say true, unconditional love can only come from God, but mom, I think you're a pretty close second.

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Now that I'm older, I don't get to see you as much. But not seeing you as much just makes the times I do get to see you the absolute best, and I look forward to it every time. Now that I'm older, I'm not going to live at home. But, I promise to always come back because I know the door is always open. Your house is always going to be my home, and no other place is going to be the same.

Now that I'm older, I realize how much I miss you taking care of me. I miss you making me dinner, making sure I was doing well in school, and taking me to endless appointments. I miss you waking me up for school and then waking me up again because I didn't listen the first time.

But, Mom, now that I'm older, I can see all that you've done for me. I can look back and see how big of a brat I was but you still loved me (and let me live) anyways. I can understand why you did certain things and frankly, you're one bada** of a woman.

To have you as my mom and my best friend has been the best thing that has ever happened to me. So, Mom, now that I'm older, thank you, for everything.

Love,

Your Daughter

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To The Mom I Appreciated Back Then, But Appreciate So Much More NOW

I hope you're proud.

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I started writing this articles about three to four months ago when I told my Mom how excited I was for this new opportunity before "I am proud of you" was said she screamed, "when do I get an article??"

Well, Mom, I told you never so you would get off my back, but here I am - writing you the article you deserve.

Mom,

I wrote about this in my letter to you and dad about your divorce but it reigns true, going to college showed me so much. I found people cursing their mother on the phone, never wanting to go home to see their mom and hating their mother with everything they had. I sat there in disbelief. How can you hate someone who did everything they could to give you the life you live? Who got you to where you are now.

I appreciated you before, but college made me realize how incredible you are.

Mom, thank you for raising me as a single parent - I know that Dad was always a big part of my life too but you did so much for me. Thank you for understanding me and what I needed even when I was not vocal about it. I never told you what I was feeling but you always seemed to know when something was off. Thank you for giving the best hugs, every time something is going wrong or I am missing home all I can picture an image is coming home to hug you.

That warm embrace that through everything was always there. Thank you for encouraging me, pushing me and never letting me give up. Thank you for showing me a strong woman, one that refuses to accept the glass ceiling, one who refused to let anyone get in the way of her and her goals. Thank you for loving me, supporting me and believing in me when I refused to do so for myself.

I know there have been times when we get rocky and our relationship was not perfect, it is a mother-daughter thing for sure, but thank you for showing me every time that your love, care, and devotion to who I am is unwavering.

Your taco chicken will forever be my least favorite meal and your singing will always be the last thing I want to hear. Yet I would not trade those for the world, I would not trade your crazy outlook and insistent ways for anything else.

I will never be able to repay you for what you did for me, but I will forever be so thankful and appreciative of it, I hope I make you proud.

Love you most,

Your Daughter

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