Dear Tunester – Today I want to talk about a topic that’s both painful and beautiful: Time. I’ve been thinking a lot about the phrase, “I don’t have time.”
As in: “I don’t have time to spend time with my baby.” Or “I don’t have time to do music with my baby.” – I need to do laundry, work, dishes, shower, eat, feed, put to sleep, and a thousand other things.
I can’t help but wonder though: Is it true that we don’t have time? In many ways, absolutely. Taking care of a baby and kids is a FULL-TIME job. No doubt about it. But also …
Is it possible that we use time as an excuse?
Let’s explore that for a minute. Are we avoiding hanging out with our kids in a meaningful way? Are we saying, “I don’t have time” but really meaning to say, “I don’t want to”?
I’m going to stop here for a minute and say that this blog post has been extremely hard for me to write. I’ve already spent more than 3 hours staring at the screen. And when that happens it is always an indication that this one is an issue that runs deep for me. So let’s continue but just know that I am right there with you if you are feeling it.
So – if time is an excuse to NOT hang out with our baby – why are we avoiding our baby?
Let’s explore some of the reasons that came up for me. I would love to hear yours in the comments below.
- It’s boring. Being with a baby or kid can be repetitive. One more time playing hide and seek; one more time jumping on the bed or tickling or singing that one song.
- It’s tiring. It’s a lot of physical work. Certainly for the first two years it’s all physical labor – picking them up, putting them down, dressing them, feeding them. Even after that it’s very tiring physically. Running around the playground, playing catch, throwing them around. One more push on that darn swing.
- It takes a different mindset and can feel isolating. There isn’t the shared understanding we have with grown-ups that allows us to tune out together in the same way or take things for granted in the same way. It is comforting to be with a grown-up who has a similar outlook merely because they’ve been in the world for a longer time. We are not surprised by the same things our kids are. (Side note: This same reason is also what makes hanging out with kids and babies so fantastically refreshing. They are surprised by things we already take for granted. We get an opportunity to experience even mundane things anew with them.)
- It involves self-sacrifice. Being with our babies and kids involves letting go of our own needs a bit. Although we strive to maintain our whole selves with them, their urgent needs take over. Kids are self centered and narcissistic and that is how they should be. But it means relinquishing ourselves a bit when we are with them.
It’s ok to feel these things. It’s ok to not want to be with our babies all the time. And it is important to explore all the reasons why.
So we know why we DON”T want to hang out with them.
And I know you know why we DO want to hang out with them.
In fact, I’ve spent my career trying to put those feelings into song. It’s impossible to describe the joy that we receive as parents and we never even came close to before. That profound joy is amplified because we watch our kids grow so fast right in front of our eyes. With every new ability and new shoe size, we feel that we are mourning the bliss that came right before.
So this whole thing is tragic really.
We want to be with them so badly. But we also don’t.
It is unbearable and sublime all at once.
And that tension, and the fact that our babies are the ultimate reminder of time passing and the moments slipping through our fingers, makes it all too hard.
So what do we do?
We do what we are doing here together. We acknowledge the difficulty.
We forgive ourselves. We try to satisfy our need not to be bored, tired, isolated and sacrificed. We do this on our own or with friends and family. And then we go and sit with our time-lapsed capsules of joy.
What else are we saving our time for? What else is more important?
As my time in this career passes, I’ve realized that my mission – beyond helping you feel more confident as parents by giving new tools and techniques – is to remind you and myself that indeed we don’t have time and we’ll never have time.
Time is not something we can have. What we do have is connection and touch, and feelings and breath.
This is why I made The Baby in Tune Online Class (and all the classes).
It isn’t about solving an urgent problem – although it helps you learn how to soothe baby, put him to sleep, and make your day wholly more fun. More than that, it is about helping you feel, touch, breathe, and sing with your baby. It is about finding time to be with your baby fully.
Our babies ask us for one thing: Our time.
That’s all they want. They want us to be with them.
So why is music the key to this conundrum?
Because it inherently brings us into the moment through FEELING, and BREATH, and being in SYNC, in a language that our baby understands and that we intuitively speak.
Let’s learn together how to do it in a way that feels just as nourishing for us as it is for them.
That’s what I am here to help you do.
Do you know someone who really needs a weekly check in on all things parenthood and music? Send them the link below so they can join the Tuesday Tune In.
Do you resonate with the tragedy of wanting to be with your baby but also NOT wanting to be with your baby? Comment and let me know.
Yes! Please send me the Tuesday Tune-In!