Yesterday someone I follow on twitter wrote the following: "Mum's are like "my kids make me smile ALL day" and I'm thinking 'wtf is wrong with me then". I responded with "You're honest and they aren't. Parenting isn't fun a lot of the time"
It got me thinking. Parenting is tough. The toughest thing I've ever done. It's loving them one second and hating them the next. It's wondering what the hell you did wrong and then being proud at their lovely manners.
There are times I feel like I'm going crazy. Those days where it takes all of my self control not to scream at them. It's being on a constant emotional rollercoaster, going through seven different emotions in ten minutes.
It's being so angry that you feel like you're going to explode. It's having to exercise more self control than you thought possible. It's feeling like you're going crazy from the effort it takes to control yourself and not explode.
It's knowing that to a large extent your actions will determine the type of person they grow to be. It's knowing what a huge responsibility that is. It's being scared that you aren't up to the task and they'll turn out badly and that will be all your fault.
It's being sure that you've totally stuffed up and trying your best to fix it. It's constantly worrying that you are scaring them for life. It's wishing that you never had kids and at the same time knowing they're the best thing you ever did.
It's longing for the day you can have a shower and go to the toilet alone and yet not wanting them to grow up.
It's hating them and loving them at the same time.
It's discovering weaknesses and strengths that you didn't know existed. It's long days and even longer nights. It's realising how little sleep you can survive on.
It's wearing your heart outside your body every single day.
It's something you'll never get right, you'll never have the parenting thing down pat, there will always be something you're doing wrong. It's learning to be okay with that.
It's constant judgement and criticism from society, you become a parent and suddenly everyone is telling you what to do and judging how you do it.
It's learning things about yourself that you never wanted to know.
It's boring, repetitive, monotony. Every day feels like groundhog day. You do the same crap over and over and over again. Wake up, make coffee, give them breakfast and a drink, clean up their mess, referee fights, make food, watch them throw it on the ground, tidy up toys, play ninja turtles for the millionth time, read books, play chasey, wipe up tears, kiss hurts away, count down until bed time, put them in the bath and then finally they're in bed.
It's longing for your childfree days and not wanting to go back to them for anything. It's fondly remembering the days when you had a job and wishing you could go back to that life for a little while.
It's turning on the tv so you can have a break and then worrying that they are getting too much screen time.
It's counting down the time until Daddy gets home.
It's wanting desperately to be alone and then missing them when you are alone. It's wondering how the hell you are going to make it through the day because it's only 8am and you're already over it.
It's counting down the hours and minutes until bedtime.
It's swearing under your breath. It's screaming on the inside whilst smiling on the outside. It's saying angry things in your head and speaking kind words.
It's being relieved when you meet other parents who are honest like you because it means you can let your guard down and be normal.
It's feeling a sense of kinship with the poor parent out in public with the tantruming toddler. It's not judging that parent because yesterday that parent was you.
It's loving them a little bit more when they are asleep. It's looking at their beautiful, peaceful sleeping faces and feeling your heart overflow with love.
It's knowing that you'd willingly give your life to save theirs.
It's raw, brutal, exhausting.
It's love like you've never felt before. It's primal, instinctive, painful love.
It's beautiful, perfect imperfection.