It’s said so often you’ll probably roll your eyes when you read it, but it’s still true: Parents don’t get days off. We don’t earn sick days. We don’t get vacation time. We certainly don’t get to sleep in on holidays or even the weekend. Parents are on duty every minute of the day. Of course, we signed up for it. We chose to bring our kids into the world. We knew what we were getting ourselves into. Knowledge, however, does not make reality any easier.
There are another few words that you don’t hear as often, but everyone should. Those words are “parents know how to rally.” As moms and dads, we don’t have the option to lie down and give up. We can’t call the game on account of rain. We have to keep pushing, keep parenting, keep loving unconditionally. We have to rally.
The baby only allowed us a few minutes of sleep and we have to be at work early for a meeting? We rally.
Migraine from hell, two toddler twins, and not a babysitter in sight? We rally.
Big fight with your mom and you just want a warm bath to cry in but your seventh grader has a science project due tomorrow? We rally.
Have company coming over and your son has chosen 30 minutes before they arrive to jump off the couch and break his arm? We rally.
Career-changing presentation at work tomorrow and your kid pukes all over you at 2 a.m.? We rally.
Dealing with mastitis and your older kids just wanna cuddle and climb on you all day? We rally.
Burned the mac and cheese while on the phone with a bill collector and now your daughter is refusing to eat anything else? We rally.
Your partner is out of town when your son comes home to say he’s being bullied and you don’t have anyone else to help you heal his hurting heart? We rally.
Your daughter gets rejected from the last college she applied to on the same day your purse is stolen? We rally.
The soccer game got canceled halfway through due to a sudden storm and you left your keys in the car so you’re all getting drenched? We rally.
You stay up late cleaning the house and wake up to discover your 3-year-old spilled a gallon of milk and box of cereal all over hell and gone? We rally.
All you want to do is sleep and all your kid wants to do is talk to you non-stop about Minecraft? We rally.
First date night with your partner in months and you find your little black dress covered in your makeup because your daughter wanted to play dress-up? We rally.
We rally because we love our kids. We do it because they deserve to have the best that we can give them. We do it so they grow up to be hard-working, sacrificial, devoted, and loyal parents themselves. We do it to make them smile.
On such little sleep, with such little energy, with so little time to ourselves, it’s a downright miracle that we’re able to keep up with our kids at all. But that’s what we do. We push through. We fight. We love. We fuckin’ rally.