This week’s guest post is by featured contributor Tanya Pritt. We hope that you find it useful and look forward to future posts from Tanya.
This time of year, even more than usual, my thoughts turn to my children as they were growing up. Maybe it is the glitter of Christmas and reminiscing about holidays gone by. As an old mom of young men grown up, this happens often. A sight, smell, sound or a dream may inspire those lapses back in time down Memory Lane.
I listened to a young mom on the radio this morning talking about how she rises early for some “alone time” before her children woke up and her day turned to sheer chaos. I smiled and reflected on the chaos of my days. Life with my two youngest boys was busy to say the least. The older of the two was a gifted athlete, playing multiple sports on premier league levels in every season. My youngest likes to tell people that we were homeless often and living in our van. This may have been his perception, but we really did have a home to go to at the end of the day, tournament, or travel. Within the van we carried two coolers, one for dry foods and one for iced drinks. We had multiple duffel bags with sporting equipment and a bin with towels and changes of clothes. We carried blankets, pillows, and rain gear. We would navigate from one sports field to another, eating a meal from the coolers and changing uniforms for the next sport or game.
People who watched us either thought “What fun!” or “You’re crazy”. I guess it’s all in perception. But as I listened to this mom on the radio this morning, I related and I got tears in my eyes as I remembered those chaotic times. And nostalgia eases the pain the chaos presented in the moment.
I, too, would get up early in the morning before the kids woke up. Sometimes extremely tired, wanting those few minutes more of sleep, but knowing if I did my day would be more frantic. Those moments gave me time for reflection, time to take stock of my gratitude (healthy boys, a job, a car that was currently running, and food for nourishment that day) and time to plan the most efficient way through the day. But it was my gratitude that gave me the strength to invite the day, its activities, and responsibilities. It helped to calm me before the energy erupted!
So to all the young mothers and fathers: hang in there! Give thanks to the chaos! Take time, somewhere in your day, for pause and reflection. And know, amid the chaos or busy adventure, that it is not the end of the story. Every day we have the opportunity to write another chapter of our family experience.
Tanya has been the Director of Milestones for the past 21 years. She has been working in the field of addictions for over 30 years.