2008 30/12

Did Cinderella’s fairy tale end when she had kids?

We’re all familiar with the fairy tale — girl meets boy, they overcome some sort of obstacle (wicked step mother, wicked queen, sleep, etc), they kiss, they marry, they live “happily ever after”. But do they? Those three words always come after the big kiss or after the couple say “I do” but what happens when that couple has kids? Did Cinderella still feel like she was living the happily ever after when the baby was screaming at 3am and Prince Charming was snoring away next to her with no sign of getting up to check on the baby?

Being a parent is one of the hardest things I can ever imagine doing. Giving birth? Piece of cake compared to the never ending task of parenting. No matter what I do, I always feel like it is the wrong decision. Yes, I’m constantly second guessing every parental decision I make. And yes, I do have my husband who helps with the parenting decisions but, since I’m home with the girls all day, there are lots of decisions I have to make on my own. I know I need to just make the decision and move on but that is easier said than done.

So speaking of the husband, parenting has also put a huge strain on our relationship. Ok Cinderella, how did you and Prince Charming deal with things when you found out that you have very different parenting styles? After having two kids, and one well into her life as a toddler, we have come to realize that the husband and I have very different parenting styles. He thinks I’m too easy and I think he’s too tough. And we have yet to find a happy medium. It causes more arguments than any other issue in our marriage. What then Cinderella?

And what do you do when your once so well behaved toddler (once meaning 5 minutes ago) decides to throw the mother of all temper tantrums in the middle of the grocery store because you make her ride in the car because she keeps picking things up off the shelf and putting them on the floor? Thank you all of you parents in that store at that time who decided to stop and stare. What then? Do you still feel like you’re living the happily ever after?

I’m not sure where this post is coming from or really where it is going. It has just been a tough couple of months. I’m tired most days but feel too overwhelmed to rest. I feel lonely and yet I just want time alone sometimes. I know, it gets easier but does it? Really? Or do you just adapt to this new life of parenting? Do you accept the fact that sleep is a rare commodity and that sleeping in is 7am? That date nights are few and far between and, really, they aren’t filled with the romance and fun that they once were? That New Year’s Eve no longer means parties and friends but kids and trying so hard to make it to see the ball drop on TV at midnight, all the time knowing you will be getting up in a few short hours with the kids.

Like I said, I’m not sure where this is coming from or where it is going. I love my children and I wouldn’t trade having them and being a parent for anything. Maybe it is because the husband and I often talk about whether or not we want a third child. Do we want to embark on that journey a third time? Do we want to add more chaos to our already chaotic lives? It seems like this is something quite a few bloggers are talking about these days as some are pregnant with their second or third and some are deciding not to increase their family size, ever. I have no idea what we’ll do. I’m content with our family of four but ask me again in a few months when Zoe is no longer a baby and has moved into the hell world of being a toddler.

In the meantime, I’d love to hear from some of you Cinderellas out there. Are you still living the happily ever after even after kids?

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