That’s what I told my husband today: Parenting is hard.
It’s sort of obvious, right? Abstractly, one knows that raising a human from infancy to adulthood must be somewhat complicated. You want to enforce discipline while also showering love. Instill morals, self-reliancy, generosity. You aim to comfort but not spoil.
But sometimes, despite your best efforts, your kid slaps you across the face, laughs, and says “I got you face!”
And all those “parenting methods” you and your husband discussed years ago, months ago, days ago; they go out the door because Jesus Christ, that hurt, you little sonofablank.
I wanted to hit him. When Ryan slapped me, my natural instinct was to slap him right back. If anyone else in the world had hit me across the face the way he did? I probably would have thrown a punch in return. But I didn’t.
Rather than hit him, I sent him to Time Out, where he sat for a couple of minutes before I released him with our usual “No hitting mommy” and “I’m sorry, Mommy” and “hug me” routine. (It’s “routine” cuz we’ve done this approximately one thousand times.)
Luckily, I have had comic relief by way of social media recently … I posted this picture on Instagram last week with a “Big Day! Heading out to celebrate!” caption:
A few people thought the caption meant I was pregnant, which made me go HAHAHAHA (and then I drank five beers).
We were actually celebrating the fact that Mike got a job. He is officially employed in Pennsylvania! (I’m not typically a proponent of excessive capitalization and exclamation points in blog posts, but YAY!! This is what we’ve been working toward for almost a year!)
So yes, parenting is hard. Life is hard. It’s all been a little harder than usual for us lately. But that’s what love is for, right? Love restrains you from slapping when you want to slap; love helps you figure things out. We’re figuring things out.