Thursday, 28 April 2016

The Words I Hate to Hear

"Make sure you savour these moments...they're over too quickly"

"Oh how I miss those baby days, they're grown up and gone before you know it...enjoy every moment while it lasts!"

These are the kind of statements mums of young children hear on a regular basis.

Personally I'd say I hear these things at least every few days.

My eldest son is 3 now and it feels like that has happened in the blink of an eye, so I get it to some extent...and I can only imagine how quickly it seems like the time has passed for mums whose children are in their 20s, 30s or even 50s.

And so, when a mum whose children are grown up see's a mum who's in the thick of it struggling a little...or seemingly taking it all for granted...or perhaps just not relishing it all as much as she ought to be...she passes on that warning.

"Enjoy every moment, they're over too soon"

With the best intentions of course.

They just want to make sure we're savouring this precious time - I get it. And I appreciate their intentions, I really do.

But...and maybe its just me... sometimes I can't help but feel really panicked by these words.

Because while you look at me and see a mum going about her day to day life, muddling through with 3 young children, rushing about to complete all the chores, stressing out about whether the toys are put away, having a little moan every now and then about how stressful bedtime was or how many tantrums we got through today...and you assume that maybe it's all passing me by or I'm not stopping to smell the roses enough...You don't see what's going on in my mind.

And nothing could be further from the truth.

I'm an anxious person by nature...I always have been and I probably always will be.

 I worry a lot...about everything.

One of my very biggest fears is the passing of time, the future, how fast my life and my kids childhoods are going to pass me's something I honestly think about and panic about every single day.

On top of that, I am hyper anxious about my children - I worry on a, an hourly basis about their safety. I imagine whole scenarios in my mind about them becoming ill, I worry incase they somehow run into the path of a terrorist attack, I worry about them being involved in an accident...I panic endlessly about something bad happening to them, and I cry most nights with absolute terror and fear at the thought of it.

I worry incase I'm not savouring it all enough, I try so hard to drink in every single moment, to commit every smile and every shared giggle to memory.

I try to capture as many memories as I possibly can on film and in photograph .

I try so hard to make sure that I'm enjoying it that I feel like sometimes my efforts to do so are actually detracting from my enjoyment.

I become SO worried that I might not be savouring it enough that I'm constantly consumed with yet more fear...fear which eats away at me, increases my anxiety, and detracts yet more from the enjoyment of these precious and fleeting days of my kids childhoods.

I know that's not what these people intend when they tell me how quickly it all goes can they possibly know the panic those words put in to me?

How can they know that I'll probably go to bed that night, remember their warnings and sob into my pillow with fear and terror at how quickly it's all going to be over?

They can't, of course. It's not their fault. It's nobodies fault.

But sometimes I really wish I didn't have to hear those words so often.

Sometimes I wish I could just roll my eyes at a tantrum or pass a comment about a hard day without needing to be reminded of how quickly these days of my life will be gone.

Because while I might not outwardly show it, I am so very very aware of it...and sometimes I think I'd enjoy these years more if I wasn't so petrified of how soon they'll be gone.

So please, mums who've done it all time you see or hear a mum like me roll her eyes or complain about something, please think twice before you warn her how quick it will all be over...maybe just say "It'll soon get easier"...those words don't scare people like me quite so much.


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