Right now, my family lives in a house that is just the right size. We have no extra space. We have four people, three bedrooms and one-point-five bathrooms. My husband is a full-time student and full-time stay-at-home dad. I work outside of the home 40 hours a week. We drive average cars, don’t go on fancy vacations, and we’re working on building a better future for our family. But that’s not to say that these aren’t good times. In fact, I can tell that someday I will look back on this era as the good old days.
Our life right now is busy, but also simple.
We’re working really hard, but it’s easy to keep our family as our focus. My job isn’t overly demanding, and my husband is at home with our kids all but 12 hours per week. Our children aren’t involved in a bunch of extra-curricular activities because they’re one and four years old. Right now, my children love nothing more than spending time with me and my husband, and that’s pretty cool. It’s also very fleeting.
When I come home from work, my preschooler excitedly pulls her chair up to the kitchen counter to help me cook dinner. While it lengthens the preparation process, I know I’m teaching her a life skill and spending quality time with her. Someday in the future, I’m sure I’ll walk in the door from work and won’t even see her until she comes home from her friend’s house a few minutes before bedtime. These are hard days, but these are days I will miss.
On weekends, we spend our time riding bikes, going grocery shopping and having dinner with friends. There aren’t weekend getaways to the mountains or a couple’s trip to California. We are hopelessly and lovingly bound to our children 24 hours a day, and it won’t always be that way. Someday, both of our kids will be in college, or married with families of their own. There won’t be tiny footsteps waking us up at 5:45 every morning, or high-pitched voices asking us to play Candy Land.
I’m told I’ll miss it, and I believe it, because these really are the good old days.
The Good Old Days
I recognize that things will only get busier and more complicated from here. In a way, I’m looking forward to it. It will be easier when our kids are both in school full-time and can ride the bus. It will be nice when they can spend the night at friends’ houses, and drive themselves places. It’ll be less expensive to have them stay home alone rather than hire a babysitter.
All those things will be great, but I know I’ll always look back fondly on these good old days.