On Being "In It" and Being Scared of Being "Out of It"

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“Oh you're really in it right now.”

tummytime

I get that a lot.

“I have two kids -- my daughter is three and my son is six months.” “Oh, you're really in it right now.”

I usually smile and nod and the conversation then moves along because, as I'm learning, once you're out of "it," you don’t really want to talk about "it" anymore. You wave farewell to diapers and nursing pillows and bottles to make way for... well, I don't really know yet. School bags and homework and sports stuff, I suppose? I'll find out soon enough.

That someday I will no longer be in "it" or want to talk about "it" or feel all of the feelings that "it" inspires makes me sad. Though, I get it. Life is often rough here in "it." I don't even really understand why I love it so much. Exhausting and overwhelming. So much time and energy expended on such little sleep. So much needing. Yes, I love to be needed but even I have my limits.

And yet, I do love it. And I worry that I won't love being out of it. What do I look like as a mom of kids instead of a mommy to babies? How will I handle homework and sleepovers and... honestly, what comes after this?

painting on an easel

The unknown of it all makes me cling to my receiving blankets. I love carrying my babies. I love the feeling of a little body on my hips, arms clasped around my neck, grasping at my shoulder. I love that thunderstorms wake my daughter. And that, once awake, she will only be calmed by being snuggled into my bed, next to me. Yes, it is awful to want her to wake but I know that someday, she will sleep right through the storm.

I've finally figured things out. I can weather the tantrums. I can fix dinner, one-handed, while carrying the baby and drinking princess tea out of little purple cups. I can handle this time. What use is all of this skill out there?

And I know I'm worrying well ahead of schedule. I'm in it. My daughter is three and my son, six months. I can see the exit out of "it," but it is way out there, miles ahead. I'm in it and I have time.

Maybe, most likely, by the time we get there, I'll be ready. That's probably the way it happens, isn't it?

Are you in it right now? Do you love it or are you counting the days till you're out?

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