Waiting Is Hard!

Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood is a new show on PBS.  It’s a spin-off of the old Mister Roger’s Neighborhood and I love it.  So do my kids.  Since I have a pretty strict TV policy in our house, I was excited to include this as part of my children’s programming repertoire.

I think I have learned as much from this show as my kids have.  I have learned that waiting is hard, getting mad is okay, and playing with people is more important than playing with toys.  Okay, so I might have known those things before, but Daniel Tiger reminded me of their importance.

This last month I found myself in a tough spot.  I was feeling very tired.  Tired of not having any time to myself, or time to work out, or time to just think/eat/sleep.  (Not to mention that silly depression came out again.)  So I thought, “Hey! You can make time!”  And I did.  I used my nap times, bed times, and any time I could think of to work out/read/eat.  Soon I was so exhausted that I was crying every night.

In the midst of this, I remembered a goal I made before Andrew was born to not worry about things like working out or having any “alone” time until my baby was at least 6 months.  By then, s/he would have a more regular schedule and hopefully sleep for longer than 2-3 hour spurts.  Sound advice, right?

But, doggone it! Waiting for that is hard.  I want to work out. I want time when I’m not surrounded by my 3 and 4 year-old or holding my baby.  However, Ben works a lot and we live too far away from friends.  Rather than banging my head on the door from frustration, I am learning to be patient.  It’s like when Amelia was really colicky. Though it was hard, I could rely on my previous knowledge of that period ending.  Guess what? It did.  Sooner than I expected.

I hear often that moms need time to themselves so they can recharge.  It’s true. However, when circumstances prevail and it just doesn’t happen or is impossible to realize, is it really helpful to dwell on it?*  To cry, scream, or thrown oneself on the ground in absolute frustration?**  I don’t think so.  This is where Daniel Tiger’s infinite wisdom comes in: while waiting is hard, that period won’t last forever.

Thanks Daniel Tiger for reminding me of this valuable lesson.

*I am certainly not advocating to do way with alone time, because it is important for a parent’s health.  I just think that sometimes it doesn’t work out that way and a parent doesn’t need to carry around extra guilt for not putting one more thing on their check-list.
**Though I certainly reserve the right to cry, scream, and throw myself on the ground in frustration occasionally.  Sometimes it just feels good.
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4 Comments

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4 responses to “Waiting Is Hard!

  1. This has, without a doubt, been my biggest challenge in parenting. I am absolutely someone who needs alone time to recharge my batteries, but, as you say, that time just isn’t there some days, especially with three kids, and especially when they are as young as ours are. I try to make do with taking a few deep breaths in a quiet room whenever I can, but that doesn’t always – ever? – feel like enough.

    You’re right: it will get easier. But I’m sending you love and support in the meantime.

  2. Waiting is hard.

    There are pieces of advice that are good, but just don’t work. For whatever reason. I question any ‘should’. And I try to see the me time I do get (a rare moment, choosing to go to bed, a walk pushing the stroller, driving the car as they babble behind me). It may not sound like time, but it’s what I’ve got.

    Though, surely these busy, boisterous days will give way to different busy-ness. And of course, I’ll miss the particular flow of life with little ones.

  3. I’m going to have to find this show…it sounds like a good one. Waiting is hard…especially if you’re super impatient like me!!!

  4. I admire you, Amber, so much as a mother. You don’t sugar coat things and you are so completely real about everything… not to mention, funny. That was a total side note to this post, but just thought I’d share it. As for waiting, it is hard… and for me, knowing that something will be coming to an end doesn’t make things any easier. In my past experience, I get so caught up in the waiting that I forget the light at the end of the tunnel and only focus on my misery of waiting (for whatever it is)…which usually leads to me being depressed.
    In life, things are so much easier said than done. Rude.