It isn’t the sleepless nights, or the endless fights. It isn’t the constant worrying about every last little thi…ng, or the constant pestering about every last little thing. It isn’t the impact on your work life, your love life, or your social life. It isn’t the lack of money, the lack of time, or even the lack of anything approaching a life of your own.
It feels like it’s all of those things, but it it’s none of them.
In the end, the hardest thing about being a parent is truly understanding that everything comes with a number. You get a certain number of bedtime stories, and a certain number of bedtime kisses. Your get a certain number of roads they’ll cross holding your hand, and a certain number of sports matches on a Saturday morning. You get a certain number of bike rides, and a certain number of bad jokes with no real punchline. Most of all… you get a certain number of hours.
One day you’ll go to the bucket, and it will be empty.
So–and I’m saying this as much to myself as to anyone else–get as much as you can, of all that you can, for as long as you possibly can. It’s the only score you’ll get that will ever truly mean anything, and it’s also the hardest one to keep track of.