Raise your hand if you have ever counted down the minutes until your kid’s bedtime? Yep, me too, and there was a time when I felt like I did this more nights than not. Once the kids were in bed, it was finally my time. It was the 90 minutes of my day that were mine, all mine and no one needed anything from me.
On some nights, I would get everyone in bed and head downstairs, and guilt would just wash over me. I felt so guilty for rushing through this time with my kids that I would run back upstairs to see if either of them were still awake and wanted another hug. While I strongly believe in having time for yourself each day, there was one thought that kept running through my mind “One day, I am going to miss this….” and it’s true. One day I will miss this bedtime routine. One day they wont need me to help them brush their teeth, one day they wont want me to read them books, and one day they wont want me to lay and talk with them. To add to this, I work full-time and I only get 15 hours of awake weekday time with my kids….3 hours per day. I quickly realized that I couldn’t afford to not make the most of this time.
With this in mind, I have really been working to re-frame our bedtime routine. Instead of viewing this bedtime routine as a burden to rush through, now I choose to see it as a gift. Some nights will be hard…oh so hard when all I want to do is shower and sit down, but I don’t want to look back with regret on missed quality time while they are still little. So tonight, join me and read that second story, spend the extra few minutes talking about you day, and if you are lucky enough to still have a baby to rock….rock them a few more minutes. These days will go by fast and the years will go by even faster.