The Momentum of Family Life

Everyone has heard it before, kind well wishers repeating that age old saying as you struggle through those endless nights and long days with a newborn :

"The days are long but the years are short"

A few weeks ago my youngest started 'big school' and I have found myself reflecting on these words. Why? Because I find them ringing home hopelessly true at the moment. During Archie's first week of school, in a rare moment when my hubby and I managed to exchange a few words together (just the two of us) I shared with him the revelation that at this present time we have been together as parents for nearly as long as we had been together as simply a couple.

Stella is turning 8 this year and Jonny and I had spent 8 years together as a couple before her arrival thrust us into the world as parents. Interestingly, the time we had before children stretches out clearly with numerous distinctly memorable events, ups and downs and clearly defined moments. Those 8 years felt as 8 years should; like a really long period time. Now as I reflect on the 8 years that followed, the time during which we have been parents, I find myself perplexed. Again, innumerable huge life events occurred during this period, some of which are the most significant in my life (such as the arrival of said children) and yet in retrospect I have no idea where those 8 years went. Significant chunks gone in a parenting blur.

Realistically and comparatively so little of that time has been available to invest into my partner and myself as a couple because so much has been invested into us all as a family. I often find weeks pouring into each other as I scramble to find and apply the 'life' brakes, doing my best to incorporate my practice of mindfulness and attempting to be present in as many moments as possible. I work on saying 'no' to too many commitments and creating space in our days, and yet, still those weeks fly by.

and so

To all you amazing mums (and dads) out there stepping into life as a new parents, or trying to stay a float with toddlers and preschoolers under foot, know that that age old saying really IS true. The days are exhaustingly long, but these years are so very short. As much as you can, do try to be present and mindful, find small moments to love in everyday, because once it finds momentum time really does fly.

With love and light

Esther McVicar

Yoga teacher, specialising in Prenatal and Postnatal Yoga

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