Kids never quite realize all the secret, invisible sacrifices parents make for them. I know when I was a kid I certainly never paid any attention.
As you get older you start to realize all the things they’ve done for you, but not until you have kids of your own do you really understand.
10 Ways Moms Secretly Sacrifice to Make Their Kids’ Lives Better
A last minute drink at the restaurant up the street with friends. Calling in sick to work to watch movies all day on a cold Fall day. Even a late night run to a drive-thru to satisfy a milkshake craving.
Nothing can be done spontaneously anymore. Everything takes planning and every single one of the dominos must line up neatly or the whole plan falls apart.
Changing your schedule is almost impossible. Staying late for work, running that errand later instead of now.
Our kids sleep/nap/school/sports/life schedule make our own life flexibility a thing of the past.
Our pre-child selves may have taken Saturday to get a massage and a pedicure. We might have spent the whole Sunday in our pajamas reading a good book on the couch.
Maybe you used to buy really expensive bath soap. Or fancy pajamas.
Now though, those are all things you have given up either because of time or money or both.
Even when we do have a moment relax, we’re constantly worried, constantly vigilant.
In the best movie after the kids have gone to bed, I still hit pause several times to hear if someone is whining.
When my husband and I are having a nice, calm evening alone when the kids are at Grandma’s, I’m constantly checking my phone to see if they called.
I’m always wondering how they are, what they’re doing, if they need me, and if they’re OK.
Our brains can never, ever relax.
Sleep is an obvious sacrifice. But what surprised me the most, is that losing sleep never actually ends.
I thought it was a phase that ended when they started sleeping through the night. I thought maybe there would be a rough night here or there when someone is sick or had a bad dream.
But I was wrong. Mom just don’t sleep the same we used to. We sleep with both ears open listening for little footsteps or cries.
I can’t meet you for a drink. I can’t catch a movie with you. I’m sorry I missed your birthday. These are words I say to friends often.
The best friends that we have are the ones whose family matches ours: a mom, a dad and two kids the same age. It works perfectly and is the only real type of friendship that can make it through this stage of life.
To say we sacrifice our body is quite the understatement. Of course, there is the 9 months they live in our bellies, the birth, the c-section scar, the months of breastfeeding….
But after that we still sacrifice. We pick up 50 pounds kids even though our back is sore. We shove our arms through the thin bars of the crib to rub their backs at night.
You curl up into a tiny twin sized bed when they’re scared at night.
Our bodies are constantly sacrificing.
I’m not talking about the time we spend with them. That’s never any kind of sacrifice.
It’s the hours we spend sitting in lawn chairs at sports practice or waiting in the school pick up line.
It’s sitting on that hard bench while they have ballet rehearsal.
It’s standing in the rain at a track meet for 3 hours waiting for their run.
I can’t tell you the last time my kids were home and I made it through a shower without someone coming in to ask me for something.
I stopped shutting the door to the bathroom a long time ago, it just seemed like a wasted step.
A Clean House
I clean something, they mess it up again.
I wipe a window, they put their fingerprints back on it. I do the dishes, they get a new cup. I mop a floor, they walk in with mud on their shoes.
The chores are never-ending.
But to sacrifice for them is a privilege.
I’d sacrifice all of the above plus 100 more to have these precious babies entrusted with me. Everything I give them is because I’m happy to do it.
Yeah, I may be tired and overwhelmed much of the time, but I’m also loved and adored and that’s pretty great.
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Liz is a just a mom trying to keep it real about how little she sleeps, how often she gets puked on and how much she loves them. You can find her here every day writing about real-mom moments.