As my oldest celebrated a birthday today, I took a trip down memory lane and tried to call to mind all of the different stages that we have survived to date. To this end, I began to zero in on the common denominators in an effort to hang on to as many memories as I could, while celebrating the growth for our whole family over more than a decade.
Surprisingly, the common denominator was shit. Let me explain.
Years 0-3: I loved every single moment and brand newness that my children offered – first smile, first foods, first crawl, first step, first step to potty-training, etc. But if I remember correctly, the first question I asked of anyone watching my children was if they had pooped? Did they poop a lot? Was their poop runny? Did they strain? When was the last time they pooped? If it was me in charge of the little angels, I charted my whole day on whether or not they pooped and what their poop looked like. So basically,my world revolved around shit.
Years 4-8: These years were fun! The little blobs of pure 24/7 responsibility were transitioning to a level of independence that allowed us parents to take a step back, take a drink and actually walk with them through their new journeys. Yes, they still struggle with actually wiping their own shit efficiently, but out of sight, out of mind, right? These are the years that you gladly overlook their shit and enjoy them.
Years 9-12: One word…mouths. Some would call it attitudes, but I only care about the shit that comes out of their mouths. I can overlook the nonverbal tidbits of this stage. Their transition into pre-teen is solid….exhausting, wine-inducing, and misdemeanor-inciting. These are the years that they begin to forget that you are their hero and expert on all things. These are the years that they begin to exert their independent thinking. These are the years that you struggle with the pros and cons of jail time. I am so over their shit.
Years 13-18: Just shit.
As parents, we just try to survive and transition all applicable humans to adulthood with strong vitals. Even with the literal shit, the figurative shit, the emotional shit, and the stupid shit – we still love the shit out of them!
What level of shit are you over?