Not so long ago I was living in the heavy fog of the baby/toddler days. You know, that time in your life when your child is a newborn or a preschooler or somewhere in between, AKA the neediest time of their lives. My days (and nights) were consumed with feedings, diaper changes, tantrums, messes and crying. If you have more than one child close in age those sleep-deprived days can seem to stretch on for years. I remember telling my friends that the soundtrack to my life was a crying baby.
Don’t get me wrong, those days were also magical. And now that my children are older, I actually miss toddler pouts and rocking a baby to sleep at 3 a.m. So, whenever I see a snuggly baby or a giggly toddler and I feel an ache of loss for those exhausting-yet-delightful days, I remind myself of the things I do not miss.
Using the bathroom with an audience. I pee alone, and it’s everything I ever thought it could be.
Potty training. My daughter is very stubborn, so I didn’t make it through with my sanity.
Sleep deprivation. My youngest child can use a remote and pour cereal, with some help from older siblings. I wake up after the sunrise again, and it is amazing.
Changing diapers. I spent six years of my life changing diapers. Now I use that time reminding people to flush the toilet and wash their hands.
Negotiating with toddlers. No more maddening debates on pajamas, snacks, toys, shoes… oh, the shoes! We are 20 minutes late, please just put something on your feet.
Washing hair. How can it be so hard to tip your head back and leave it there for five seconds?!
Being late to everything unless you factor in a 30 minute contingency plan. I no longer have to allow extra time for last-second poopy diapers and toddler tantrums.
Washing bottles and sippy cups. Big kid water bottles have nowhere near the amount of pieces and parts as bottles and sippy cups.
Deciphering a toddler’s needs and wants. No more confusing answers to simple questions like, “Do you want milk or juice?” “Milk. No, juice. Um, yes. Milk. No, milk. Yes, juice. Yes. No. Yes. No.” “So, juice then?” “Waaaaahhhh!”
Feeding everyone else before me. Wait, I actually still do this. I suppose it’s something to look forward to.