James Eaton

March 20, 2021

Daily Blogging Challenge - Day 20 - Family

My wife and I had kids when we were pretty young. My son was born when I was 24 and my daughter was born when I was 25. Yes... they are about 13 months apart in age. We went from 2 people (my wife and I) to 2 kids and 2 dogs in the span of just a few years. 

It was chaos but it was a fun and wild ride. Now that my children are getting settled into elementary age, we are beginning to develop new patterns and flow that are really starting to feel like we operate as a unit. We all work together to make this life happen. From school, to pickups, to piano lessons, work, and social events, we have to work together to get everything accomplished. That time that was spent packing diaper bags and extra clothes has not shifted to travel time for events and making sure the kids finish their homework. 

But I don’t really miss the baby days. On a regular basis when you have a young child, someone (usually a random person) will say something like this, “enjoy this time because it only gets harder / worse from here.” That idea used to scare me. Was this the best that it was every going to be? I’m exhausted and there is a caked layer of formula on all my jeans. I was carrying an extra shirt in my bag to change into when my son would spit up on me during a feeding. Is this is the best? 

In our experience, things have just gotten better with time. There are new challenges and bigger things to tackle, but my kids are coming into their own personalities and I love seeing them accomplish new tasks and grow as little humans. I have watched them adapt over the last year to new schedules, new rules (masks, social distancing, etc), and new modes of school better than some adults. Kids are resilient and more capable than we give them credit for. This year at home would have been so much harder if I had newborns. All of that commentary to says this: I love this age and I would not go back in time. 

We are forging a path as a family unit and beginning to create routines that are ours and not just the influence of others on our lives. We are figuring out what works for us and how to get things done the way that we want to do them. My wife and I are figuring out the values we want our kids and family to live by and working to make that reality. It’s not easy, but it is so rewarding to see when those dreams and goals became little realities. 

I love my family. They bring me so much joy and I am grateful for the life that we are creating together. I know we are going to face new struggles as new seasons emerge, but as long as we do it together, I think we can make it through anything that comes our way.