Sometimes I wonder what my life would be like if I didn’t become a parent. I often joke that I had to have kids so that I could make this magazine a success, as I wasn’t a parent when I first started PakMag. Sadly, the tax man doesn’t agree they should be deductible.
You look at the lives of non-parents with a little bit of envy for their peaceful days; being able to pee without being watched; and being able to do whatever they want, when they want – without having to think about who is going to watch the kids. No noise, no negotiating about naps, teeth cleaning or homework, and no one complaining that they suddenly don’t like the favourite food that you just cooked them, or messing up the house you just spent hours cleaning.
The thing is, parenting is relentless.
It is constantly thinking about a zillion things all day long, whilst having a mini version of yourself or your partner challenging you to your core – because they can.
It is an endless list of to dos, mental exhaustion, and living in a zombie state of brain fog from the sleepless nights, constant demands and emotional rollercoaster. How kids can go from happy to sad, angry to loving, laughing to loathing – in the space of five minutes is impressive to watch, and oh so hard not to join them at times.
As an observer, I have loved analysing parenthood.
I think being a parent is the most important job in the entire universe and isn’t valued enough. We are raising the next generation of people for our planet – what job is more important than that?
How we raise them, will determine the type of world we end up with – as they will be our future leaders. This scares and excites me, but also reminds me that I have a very important job to do. Sometimes I do it well, but if I had a boss giving me feedback on how I could improve; there would be lots to work on – but it’s important to remember that as parents, we are a work in progress too. We aren’t always going to get it right, but if we’re trying our best, we learn and grow as parents along with our children.
It is an honor to raise children, and sometimes with the relentlessness of life – it’s easy to fall into the trap of autopilot mode.
I can honestly say I am a better person because I became a parent. I am enrolled in the most challenging course I have ever taken. My teacher? – my kids. They have taught me just as much, if not more, than what I am teaching them.
They have taught me to let go of control. When you have kids, you soon realise that as much as you try to be in control, you are not… and if you keep trying to be in control it will drive you crazy. Especially when it comes to having a spotless house with everything in its place.
They have taught me how selfish I was before becoming a parent. Having kids, you have to be selfless and put their needs before your own.
They have taught me that no matter how hard life can get, that you have to keep going – giving up is never an option.
My kids remind me to have fun, to be silly, and to love more than I ever thought possible.
My kids give my life meaning, and I am so grateful to be their mum.