I took the last two weeks off to spend more time with my family. We spent 5 days in the Okanagan and the rest at home. It was nice to spend more time with Baby T1.0, Baby T2.0 and Mrs. T. At the same time, dealing with an almost 3 year old and a 4 month old during all my waking hours was simply exhausting. I definitely had my shares of parental struggles the last two weeks.
A small sample of the parental struggles & craziness that I encountered:
- Baby T2.0 refusing to sleep/nap unless she was carried in a baby carrier and bounced on a fitness ball.
- Baby T1.0 deciding that he would put every single book and clothes in his room on his bed during “nap time” then refusing to take a nap even though he was yawning the whole time.
- Baby T2.0 screaming on top of her lungs at random time of the day – middle of the night, early morning, during meal time. Only solution was to hold her.
- Baby T1.0 throwing a tantrum because the banana he had in his hand broke into two pieces.
Unfortunately I lost my patience a few times and yelled at Baby T1.0, which made me feeling like I was the worst parent in the world. 🙁 My experience looking after two little ones the last two weeks has made me become even more appreciative of what Mrs. T does every single day – putting her career on hold to look after the kids. It has also made me realize that I need to help out more and to allow her to have her “alone time” breaks from time to time.
To be perfectly honest, I had a few “I wish the kids are older” moments when they were all over the place – throwing tantrums, not listening to directions, not wanting to nap, and etc. I thought about how nice it would be if both kids were school age, how they would simply listen to us and we would be able to have some peace and quiet time.
Then I realized that I was getting myself into the never-ending-looking-forward-have-to-be disaster. Constantly looking forward to something and not embracing the current moment is simply not the way to live life. When I managed to step back a bit, I realized that regardless how old the kids are, there will be parental struggles and challenges. We will face parental struggles and challenges when kids are in elementary school, when they are teenagers, and when they are adults. It is part of being parents.
The other night when the kids are FINALLY sleeping, Mrs. T and I sat on the couch and had some adult time. During our “adult” conversation, Mrs. T asked if I would still have kids, given what we know today.
We both decided that we would still have kids. Some of the moments are too precious that I would never want to lose. For examples:
- Coming home to be greeted by Baby T1.0 asking “daddy how’s your day?”
- Baby T1.0 sitting with Baby T2.0 while holding her hands and giving her a hug.
- First time Baby T1.0 reading The Going to Bed Book all by himself.
- Baby T2.0 giving me the most innocent smile while holding her.
- Holding Baby T1.0 and T2.0 for the first time in my arms right after they were born.
There are a lot of challenges that parents face on a daily basis but they also get a lot of rewards from their kids. For me, the rewards definitely outweigh all the challenges and struggles.
Since this is a personal finance blog about becoming financial independence, you are probably wondering why I am rambling on about being parents and the rewards and challenges that parents face.
Because I just like to talk about being a parent?
I kid I kid!
Similarities between becoming financial independent and being a parent
I realized that there are many similarities between becoming financial independent and being a parent. Both have their respective challenges and rewards. Becoming financial independent and being a parent both require some level of sacrifices along the way. The sacrifices make the rewards even more worthwhile.
Most importantly, I believe neither of them have a set finish line.
You don’t all of a sudden get relieved of your parental duties when your kids turn 18. There’s still some level of parental responsibility even when they are in adulthood. Similarly, just because you have reached financial independent, it doesn’t mean you are all of a sudden free from all the financial responsibilities that you have been doing for years, like budgeting, watching out for expenses, and monitoring passive income.
Ok I will stop rambling on. 🙂 Dear readers what’s your view on becoming financial independent and being a parent?