I’m sure a lot of mums have had someone tell them that babies grow up so fast. So, cherish it. I know people mean well sometimes, or maybe they are just trying to make conversation, but I always hate when I hear it.
It’s usually told in response to comments about their lack of sleep, screaming, teething and all kinds of frustrations that come with being a parent.
But when you are so sleep deprived you are constantly in a zombie-like state, forever trying to work out where you put your keys you had in your hand two seconds ago or why you keep putting the milk in the cupboard, you don’t need to hear that.
When it comes up in conversation the rough time you’ve been having, and you get that grin, and you just know it’s coming. “They’re so little, it won’t last forever. Cherish it. One day you’ll miss it.” Yeah, right.
At this point, I seriously want to slap them. Maybe I would have if I’d actually had the energy. I don’t know if these people never had a child who didn’t sleep, or threw tantrums. Maybe they had perfect little angels and have no idea how hard it can be at times.
The first few times I heard it, it made me feel terrible. Like I was a bad mother because I didn’t enjoy every moment of being a mum. Every single night was hell, and then you see this perky, smiley face basically telling you that you shouldn’t be feeling like that. It’s like they’re saying, “Snap out of it. Enjoy it.” It’s mean.
Just because it’s not forever, doesn’t mean it’s not incredibly difficult now.
Being a Mum is Hard
I’m not going to be happy when my baby screams for hours and nothing calms them. When I’m so exhausted I’m worried I will drop them. Or when I finally get them down, climb into bed myself, and they start crying all over again. Would any sane person actually enjoy this?
It’s almost like it’s ingrained in us that babies are such a blessing and you must love every single bit of it. But they are a lot of work too. I don’t think anyone would tell someone who just had to clean up a massive poop explosion to cherish it.
So please don’t tell anyone to cherish every moment. I’m sure they are doing their best and they cherish the moments worth cherishing. In years to come, when I look back, I’m sure I will remember fondly, the smiles, the hugs, the firsts and moments that make my heart swell with pride.
I am also sure, that I will not miss those nights when I can’t get to sleep until 4 AM or I get woken up every hour. I’ll be grateful that I can sleep, and I’ll remember back to those cheeky smiles that I miss that were at times the only way I could make it through the night.
I know babies grow up so fast, and it seems in a blink of an eye they are grown up. And there will always be those times in their babyhood or childhood that I will miss. But the sleepless nights and tantrums will not be one of them.
It is okay to not cherish every moment. Everything isn’t always roses and sunshine. And that’s okay.
Have you been told to cherish every moment? How did it make you feel?