Over the last few weeks my social media has been filled with beautiful prom pictures and accomplished graduates. Rightly so, proud and pleased mothers are busy posting these huge milestones of their children. I have enjoyed the posts and celebrations, but I have also noticed a consistent theme. Almost all of the posts involve the message that these babies grew up way too fast. Over and over again I have read statements like, “I can’t believe my baby is graduating!” or “This went by so fast!” or “It seems like only yesterday…”
When my first son was born, I remember people telling me over and over again to enjoy each moment because they grow up too fast! At that time, I didn’t realize how true this statement was.
During the long days and sometimes sleepless nights of motherhood, it doesn’t seem fast at all. However, someone eloquently described the phenomenon of the brevity of children’s years as youth in a way that I could relate to and it has stuck with me. They told me, “The days are long, but the years are short!” How true I have discovered this to be. Not only is it true, but also it has enabled me to create a proper perspective when I’m in the midst of the long days of motherhood.
Sometimes the days seem way beyond 24 hours.
Our days may be filled with whining, demanding children. We look with great anticipation to our children’s bedtime because we are exhausted and need a moment to ourselves. Motherhood is tiring; motherhood is demanding; and motherhood is full of continuous selfless service. Motherhood can even be lonely; motherhood can even seem to be full of monotonous tasks; and motherhood can even seem underappreciated! However, the days are long, but the years are short.
A portion of the poem “On Children” by Khalil Gibran states, “Your children are not your children…You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth. The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite, and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far. Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness; For even as He loves the arrow that flies, so He loves also the bow that is stable.” We have been entrusted with our children for short a while though at times it doesn’t seem short. The days seem extremely long however, the years go by quickly. We have a short 18 years before our children might go off to college or enlist in the military. They will soon be able to make their own decisions even if they are not decisions we would make for them.