It is impossible to follow all the parenting advice we get from the moment we announce that we plan to join The Club.

The toughest?  “Enjoy every moment.”

There is a part of you that knows this advice comes from a place of nostalgia, from a parent who has forgotten all the miserable, tear-your-hair-out moments that go along with parenthood.  And you don’t quite believe them that it goes by so fast when you want to throw up every single day for three months.  It feels eternal.  No way does this go by quickly.

But then suddenly you’re trying to figure out how to celebrate your baby’s first birthday, and you realize that yes, indeed, it did go fast.  And slowly.  So terribly slowly.  The days are long, but the years are short.  I say this constantly.

Still, if you’re like me and all the others who loved this Don’t Carpe Diem post, you secretly openly despise all the Well-Meaning Idiots who tell you to enjoy every moment because even though it really does fly by, you still find it impossible to enjoy the airplane tantrums or the up-all-night illnesses.

Instead, I settle for enjoying several moments every enormously long day.  I also keep trying to figure out ways to preserve those moments, so that even if I don’t enjoy them enough now, they’ll be around later when I can appreciate them more fully.

Here are Exhibits A and B.

These were just run of the mill moments.  Little boys wishing to be bigger boys.  Boys who wanted to go further, faster.
Of course I smiled as I snapped these pictures, but you know when I will really enjoy these moments for all they’re worth?

When he is six, zipping down the street on his own two-wheeler.

testing out big brother's tricycle

When he is sixteen, sitting behind the wheel with his very own license.

testing out the driver's seat

I will immediately think of these pictures and the moments they represent.
I will remember when they were smaller.  When I could keep them safer.
I will revel in their little-boy joy and how broad their smiles were when I told them how “big” they were.

And I’ll enjoy my visit back to these moments before we all go speeding into the new ones.

I think that’s really the most we can expect of ourselves.  To enjoy many, many moments now…

and save some for later.

10 Responses to Someday
  1. Ado
    February 11, 2012 | 9:43 am

    I think this is SO true – the time DOES go by interminably slowly and yet…it’s gone in the blink of an eye. Really weird.
    PS: On your “maybe I should send my kids to Montessori elementary school…” my friend is a public school teacher and her kids go! If you are interested – just read the book “Montessori: The Science Behind the Genius” – it’s the 1st study that analyzes Montessori kids w. real data and describes in-depth what Montessori elem. school is like.
    PSPS: You could always train as a Montessori teacher too! (-:
    Signed, Yes I Drank The Kool Aid (-:

  2. Stasha
    February 11, 2012 | 9:46 am

    Love this post. You nailed it: days are long, years are short!!

  3. NJ @ A Pocket Full Of Dinosaurs
    February 11, 2012 | 10:52 am

    You are right, and you are smart to take a photo and jot down the memory to reflect back to!

  4. Sarcasm Goddess
    February 11, 2012 | 1:50 pm

    Look at that face on the bike! We should all live life with that much enthusiasm.

  5. Rach
    February 12, 2012 | 7:54 pm

    Very sweet 🙂

  6. Missy @ Wonder, Friend
    February 12, 2012 | 9:33 pm

    I read this on my phone the other day, and hate to comment there, so I’m sorry I’m just now getting here! I adore this post – it’s spot on. And you made me just a bit weepy, in the best way!

  7. Missy | The Literal Mom
    February 13, 2012 | 3:27 pm

    Very well said, Jessice! And one of my favorite quotes is also “The days are long but the years are short.”

  8. Tami
    February 14, 2012 | 6:04 am

    Do you scrapbook? This would be a perfect picture to have with another one when he is older in a car or dangling car keys in the air next to his face with a big smile. Oh! and add a copy of his permit to the page too!!!

  9. Grumpy Grateful Mom
    February 15, 2012 | 8:32 am

    Yes! Very well written! I’m also so glad I’m saving those memories for later. What a cutie you have!

  10. humanmama
    February 18, 2012 | 5:40 am

    Wonderful. I’ve gotten so many people suggesting that Don’t Carpe Diem post as well, and it’s true, the days are so long. That’s what I’m trying to enjoy during this pregnancy, too, enjoy when I have 2 and not 3 running around, and that before I know it I won’t even remember “just 2 kids…” but it’s not easy 🙂

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