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In Truth, It's Not Easier

I've been a parent for just over 7 years now. It's been wonderful. And a pain in my butt. And rewarding. And madness-inducing. And everything in between.

I've strived to be honest about what parenthood has been like to me. On this blog, I spent years writing about the good, the bad and the ugly. In real life and on Facebook, I share the joy and the pain. After all, being a parent is not easy, and anyone who says different is either a liar, delusional, a bad parent or extremely lucky (possibly all of those).

During the early years, the baby years, I struggled. But I kept thinking that it would get easier. That we'd get through the developmental and growth spurts and make it to the other side. The thing is, there is no other side. Just as life itself is really a circle, a roller coaster, full of ups and downs, so is parenthood.

I now have a 7 year old and an almost 5 year old. It's not easier to parent them, but it is different in so many ways. Their personalities don't change, but what they are dealing with and how they act do change.

There are different challenges to having a 7-year-old girl who gives me sass than the challenges of her looking at me defiantly while doing what I just told her not to do when she was a toddler. There are different challenges to having an almost-5-year-old boy who says I'm a mean mommy because I make him take a bath than the challenges of him throwing a tantrum and trying push me away when he needed his diaper changed.

What I've come to realize is that it's all variations on a theme. Their themes. So it doesn't necessarily get easier to parent them as they get older, but the challenges changes. The dynamics change. The tricks and techniques I and Londo use as parents have to adapt.

And though I believe it is so important to talk about the difficulties and not paint parenthood in some unrealistic way, I also believe it's vital to keep in mind the wonderful aspects of being a parent.

My daughter still is an amazing communicator and loves to snuggle up to us, just like when she was a toddler. My son still tells me how much he loves me and is great at puzzles and putting like things together, just like when he was a toddler.

We still deal with developmental regressions (and corresponding leaps forward) on a quarterly basis with both kids. And though the regressions are and always will be frustrating, the leaps forward are incredible! The things they can do now! It's just amazing!

So, no, it isn't easier. But it is still absolutely worth every second of the ups and downs to watch these wonderful kids of mine grow, develop and learn.


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