I whine a lot about the rigors and stresses and unrelentlessness of parenting. It sucks the life out of me on a regular basis. I miss being able to just clean the house in peace. I really, really miss having a clean house. Irrationally so. I miss being able to dash out and run 5 errands in 30 minutes. I miss waking up to a noise other than someone screaming at me. I miss having a job where I have a chance of completing projects I start. I miss being able to sweep the floor and have it stay clean for more than 4 minutes. I miss calm. I miss picking up and heading out without having to remember diapers, sippy cups, snacks, toys.....I miss all that.
Recently, I was talking on the phone with a really good friend from the past. We were kid-free when we lived in the same place. We shopped together, ate lunch out, went to bars. We talked on the phone for hours a day. We discussed big issues in the world, books, religion....
She hasn't started a family yet and was describing her life to me. She recently moved and was rattling around in a new house. Hadn't made friends yet. Didn't know what to do with herself. Takes 4 hour naps, reads for 3 hours a day, cleans the house with only CNN on for company.
And you know what? Instead of feeling jealous, I thought, "I'm glad I don't feel that way anymore." It brought back those feelings I used to have. Boredom. Feelings like I was just biding time. I guess you can say, if nothing else, kids really give your life a definite direction. I am accomplishing something every day, even if I suck at it some days. Even though I never, ever get a chance to get dressed in peace. And I never complete any project I start in under a year. Even though there are disgusting chocolate smears on the walls and repulsive globs of things stuck on the floor. At least I am not bored anymore. I have purpose to every single day. I wouldn't go back to the way I was before. Maybe I don't really miss having a clean house. And I have a very real reason to get up every morning. I have no choice. Someone is usually screaming my name!