Our two babies.
Tiny centers of our Universe. Little people, created from parts of me and parts of him. So much love pouring into them every day. So much love radiating out of them.
Nothing can prepare you for the kind of love one feels as a parent. People will tell you about it, and try to explain it. They'll say it's intense and immediate and overwhelming. They'll tell you there's nothing like it.
And they're right.
Except, until you're a parent, you won't be able to understand what they're saying. Not truly. Not fully.
It's been more than two years since I became a parent, and I am still amazed at the power of the love I feel for our two kiddos. I look at those two and I feel my heart do cartwheels. I know that every parent thinks their kids are the cutest, the smartest, the "fill-in-the-blank"-est; but our kids really are so cute and so smart. They're at least ninety-eighth percentile, I'm sure. And even if they weren't, my heart would still burst with love for them. So much love.
If you're a parent, you understand this, right? There is just so much love.
And here's why it's important that we love our kiddos so much... They will drive us crazy. Nutty. Cuckoo's Nest. The people who tell you about parental love don't talk so much about this part of it. The tantrums, the meltdowns, the whining, the hitting, the defiance. This gig ain't easy, y'all.
Which brings me to this truth: While I always love my kids, I've also discovered that there are times when I don't like them.
Before you freak out and call me a terrible mom, let me explain. The dictionary defines the verb "like" as to take pleasure in; to find agreeable or congenial. Can't we all agree that there are times when we don't find our kids agreeable or congenial? Personally, I take zero pleasure in the Boy when he is screaming his head off after being told he can't have fruit snacks and Cheetos for dinner. And while Ruby is still totally in adorable baby mode, it's tough to find it agreeable to wake up hourly every night for the past month -- even with a congenial baby.
So, yeah. I'm not always "in like" with the kiddos. And I'm totally not afraid to admit it.
But the thing is, even in the moments when I struggle to retain the last shred of my sanity, when I take the time to step back for a moment, the love comes pouring in. And pretty soon, the tears dry up, hugs are doled out, and the like sneaks back in as well.