It goes slow when your belly and ankles are burgeoning, morning sickness gripping you on the cold bathroom floor.

It goes slow when you’ve been up all night with a screaming infant, trying to get him to properly latch on.

It goes slow when you’re wrangling a hysterical toddler out of the store because you wouldn’t buy him another Lightning McQueen toy.

It goes slow when you have to take a week off work because your child isn’t fever-free without rotating Advil and Tylenol.

It goes slow when you’ve finally managed to put together a well-balanced meal and they refuse to eat it.

It goes slow when your living room is covered in LEGOs and Marvel figures, and you end up cleaning them up yourself again because you are too tired to argue.

It goes slow when you’re attending another IEP meeting, alone, flushed with frustration, and very overwhelmed.

It goes slow when your hormonal teenager is screaming I hate you! and you have to lock yourself in the bathroom with the fan on because you’re crying so hard.

It goes slow when you’re bone-tired, weary and worried if you are a good enough mother, questioning every decision.

But then again . . . 

It goes fast when it feels like butterfly wings are tickling the inside of your belly when you feel the baby move for the first time.

It goes fast when you memorize the slope of your infant’s nose as he falls asleep in your arms.

It goes fast when your precious toddler strings together his first sentence.

It goes fast when you rush home from a late shift and find them waiting up for you because they need you to tuck them in.

It goes fast when you spend a lazy Saturday together making brownies from a mix, and they tell you that you’re the best baker.

It goes fast when your living room floor is covered in middle school graduation gifts, and your child’s legs are longer than yours.

It goes fast when your excited teenager gets his driving permit.

It goes fast when you have to lock yourself in the bathroom with the fan on because you’re crying so hard after your young adult announces he may want to attend university overseas.

It goes fast when you’re bone-tired, blessed, and still weary, but finally realize, yes, you are a good enough mother.

Time is a trick.

It goes so slow. It goes so fast.

And you would do it all again.

But you can’t.

So you tell yourself you are lucky to have experienced it.

And you were.

You may also like:

The Nights Are So Long

I Don’t Ever Want to Forget These Days With You

Savor These Moments, Mama, Because Time Flies

Claudia Caramiello

Claudia Caramiello is a certified pharmacy technician by day, freelance writer by night, mother of two teen sons both day and night. Hailing from New Jersey, she survives single motherhood on caffeine, humor, and listening to Twenty One Pilots. Her articles have been featured on Scarymommy, Bluntmoms, Sammiches and psych meds, Elephant Journal, and Moms & Stories. You can find her on Facebook at Espresso & Adderall and read more from Claudia on her blog, https://wordblush.com/