parenting from the trenches…

I used to think it would get easier…
this thing called parenting.

I never dreamt it would get harder
or that I would miss those younger days
of toddler fits and early bedtimes.

Because really, I don’t miss those…
at least, I don’t miss them very often.

There are days, though.

And, yes,
my mama did try to tell me
that there would be days like this.

These days when your kids are
in the muck and mire of life
and you are right there in the trench with them…
covered in mud.

These days when you cannot see daylight,
or at least, sunlight,
for the depth of the trench you are trudging through.

These days when they are inundated with a million and one
choices for their lives,
and apparently the decision of
“what do you want to be when you grow up?’
was supposed to have been made yesterday.

These days when the trench is loud and lonely,
smelly and slimy,
cold and closing in,
and you wonder…is there life at the end of this gulley?

Then, in a random, quiet moment,
smack-dab in the middle of the stench of the trench,
you stare life right in the eye.

That life that came from you and is now learning
to forge her own way looks back at you
with a twinkle and a grin
and says…
“I’m sorry, Mom! I love you!”

And, in that moment,
you are mighty glad you get to be the one
trudging through the trench with her.

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