Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Is it normal to be tired when raising a toddler?

I'm having problems today: computer problems, toe problems, problems with my dog, and two of my kids are sick. Did I mention I love my life?

So, to cheer myself up, I thought I'd republish a post that makes me remember what it's all about. It originally appeared on June 29, 2006. I love this self-portrait of Ruthie before she lost her tooth...

I had to laugh out loud when I saw this Google search listed on my Statcounter’s “Recent Keyword Activity”:

is it normal to always be tired when raising a toddler

Okay, so my site came up on page 4 of the search. I’m sure it would have been closer to the top if I used the word “normal” more than just one time in over 60 posts.

But to answer your question, my dear Google searcher (if you ever get to page 4 of your search), the answer is YES.

Yes, it is normal to be tired of lifting 30 pounds of toddler into carseats and high chairs, out of cribs, and down from places they shouldn’t be climbing. It is normal to be tired of wrestling little bodies into small shirts and shorts, and tiny feet into socks and shoes. It is normal to be tired of playing chase to make going to the supper table, getting into the bathtub, or going to bed more fun. It is normal to be tired of streaming conversations about bugs and clouds, and the contents of diapers and where is God and why do we have toenails. It is normal to feel tired when you see the messes created by little hands that can’t possibly clean it all up.

But I will say that I never get tired of satin-soft cheeks and sticky kisses and whispers of “I wuv you, Mommy.” I never get tired of up-close hugs by short little arms and small hands reaching up to mine. I never get tired of little voices singing improvised versions of “Jesus Loves Me” and “ABCs” and reading Goodnight Moon. I never get tired of belly laughs and silly dances and noseprints on my windows. I never get tired of holding a limp, sleepy little body against me and hearing the worry-less breathing of a child completely dependent on me.

You see, I only have one toddler left.

I’ve watched the toddler years give way to the preschool years. I’ve watched those years give way to the elementary years and middle school years, and even now, I’m watching those fly by, too. It happened so fast. I spent so much time waiting for them to become independent that I didn’t realize how fleeting are the giggly games of chase and breathy butterfly kisses and “Mommy, you pwetty.”

Yes, it’s normal to be tired. But it won’t last long.

And I simply can’t imagine a more beautiful way to use my energy.

So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.
Psalm 90:12


Barbie @ Mamaology said...

Thank you SO much for your encouraging words!!!!! And for all your wisdom:) I truly appreciate it!

Anonymous said...

I also have to thank you for that encouragement--I really needed to hear that today!

Lori - Queen of Dirty Laundry said...

So sorry to hear of your less than fabulous day. Hope the computer, toe, dog and kids improve soon!

And thanks for another sweet, uplifting post that reminds us all of the ups and downs of motherhood.

Carrie said...

Oh how did you know that I was SO tired this morning? Thanks!

Beck said...

And now I am crying! THat was BEAUTIFUL!
Of course, if one really IS tired all the time, it's always wise to go to the doctor and get your iron levels checked - anemia is REALLY common and really easily fixed.

Short Stop said...

WOW! I'm coming to your site from Mary's (notbefore7). This post was encouragement to my soul...pure and simple. I'm pregnant with my 3rd, and my oldest isn't yet 3, and I'm TIRED! Thank you for these simple reminders of the precious things that are so worth every bit of energy.

Nicole said...

Can I tell you that I love you even though we have never met?? :) I know that sounds crazy but when I read your blog...I am like, "Okay...I cand do this!!" I have five as well ages 9,7,3,2 and 14 months.
Last night I prayed for rest. I feel so tired at night and when I wake up. ALWAYS tired!!
Thanks for your encouragement and for being real.

Anonymous said...

Love this post. It is so true!!
All for His glory, ~Rhen

Jen said...

How you touched me today after having ONE OF THOSE DAYS...thank you dear friend for reminding me of why I stay home and why I have these days.

Ladybug said...

I needed this today and for some reason...there it was. It has been a tough day in our household! LOL Thanks so much for this post.

Mary@notbefore7 said...

I loved this the first time I stumbled upon it and I loved it again today! Thank you.

I hope things get better over there.

Andrea said...

I really, really, really, really, really, really, really, LOVE THAT POST! I loved it when I read it before, and I love it now.
so true.

Kristina at Learn2Luv2Run said...

Oh my goodness, thank you for that. ANd at least I'm not the ONLY mom who has THOUGHT that. Although I wouldn't have googled it.

I haven't been "normal" the last 3 weeks since baby, I can't lift my toddler and it has been almost MORE difficult and tiring than just doing everything "normal" like I did before my c-section.

Thanks for the encouragement!

Deidre said...

Well, I have NO doubt that the tired Mommy who was doing that google searched was blessed beyond measure when she found your blog. She will be thankful!

I love that picture. I hope your kids are feeling well soon. I have a sick one today too.

Grafted Branch said...


You are so right here.

But sometimes it was just so hard to stop and smell the roses. Sometimes I was just sooooo tired. Tooooo tired.

I think that's one reason I blog. Because for as hard as I tried to remind myself to remember this or that, I still forgot. Because there was always something new to remember. And still is.

Sarah said...

yep, cherishing every minute of these tired years. I am so thankful for the wisdom that has been passed down to me from many a seasoned mom, I'd be foolish not to listen to it. My oldest is only three and there are times I wish we could stay here forever. I will not wish a single day away, thanks for the reminder! And as the song says, "Let them be little...cause they're only that way for awhile...Let em cry, let em giggle, let them sleep in the middle, oh but let them be little!"

Julie said...

I couldn't agree more!

Jenn @ Knee-Deep in Munchkin Land said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you! What a wonderful reminder, that while hard, it is completely and totally worth it. Another great post, Katherine. Thank you!

Megan@SortaCrunchy said...

Bringing me to tears here - not that that's entirely unusual! :)

Thank you, as always, for thoughtful and compassionate wisdom.