The Sounds of Parenting

I came home from work the other day to an empty house.  My wife was at work and the kids were with friends until later in the evening.  I walked in to a house devoid of the commotion, chaos, and calling out for something to drink, or eat, or to help tie a shoe that typically echoes through the living room. There was peace and there was quiet, which was nice, but something was missing.

As a dad of two girls, my house and my immediate vicinity usually sound like the front row at Maple Grove Raceway if they were racing Airbuses on vuvuzela night.  There is a constant din to parenting that is almost impossible to escape. It is the roar of the banging, clanging, crying, whining, thumping, bumping, belching, and crashing our kids can create that wasn’t there when I walked in to the house.

Almost 11 years ago, there was peace and quiet in my life.  My wife and I were the only ones in the house and I never once saw her use the bed as a trampoline to jump from or bang on the kitchen pans with a wooden spoon.  But then we had kids and the volume got turned up (I had no idea anyone could make as much noise getting out of bed as my kids do). My kids have yet to master the concept of subtlety so instead they opt for blazing an audible trail that can be heard from three counties away and level mighty oak trees. They jump, leap, and stomp around the house as if they were testing the dead weight strength of my floor joists.  I have heard sobs that rattled our double pane windows. I know when they come down the steps because they fling themselves off the last 3 steps every time.

But along with the decibels of demolition my kids are apt to raising, they also are prone to letting loose with fits of giggles, full laughter, and concert lengths worth of songs.  I love listening to them talking with one another in hushed voices or hearing where their imaginations will take them.  They are outlets of sound that will make your heart sing or get you out of bed in the middle of the night when their fear prompts them to call for you.

As much as we may pine for peace and quiet as parents, the truth is, our lives will never be quiet again.   Apart of being a Dad, besides the slew of responsibilities that come with the title, is the constant buzz resonating in my life from my kids. What was missing when I walked in to the house the other day was the fighting, whining, crying, pleading about not taking a bath and the harmony of their giggles, their laughter, their singing, and the innocence of their voices telling me, ‘I love you Daddy’.  When I walked in to the house the other day I had peace and quiet but I’m a Dad and it only made me miss the noise.



11 responses to “The Sounds of Parenting

  1. Happies father days, Jett’s .


  2. I am coming to terms with the fact that my life will not be quiet for a long, long time. Sometimes, it gets to me, but in those rare moments of quiet, I start to miss those noise makers sooner than I think. The other day, I was out of town with the kids, visiting the friend, and my husband texted that it was strangely quiet when he got home from work. And I realized the quiet is probably much harder for him.


    • In one respect, having a moment of tranquility is great but I didn’t want to be a Dad because I thought it would be quiet. I miss them after not too long too. Its almost a part of who we are.


  3. about100percent

    I’m a huge fan of silence, but I have to admit those times when my husband gifted me with alone time by taking the kids with him for the afternoon left me a little bored and wistful for kid noises.


  4. Happy (belated) Father’s Day!!!


  5. Well said. As much as we long for peace and quiet, it feels wrong now when I get it. Happy belated Father’s Day.


  6. Just found your blog…what a timely read. Sound came out of my daughter non-stop from the moment she woke this morning until the moment she fell asleep. She sang songs for about three hours straight this afternoon. The same songs. Many times. I thought my head would explode. But about ten minutes after she fell asleep and was quiet…I wanted her to wake up and sing again.

    Looking forward to more good reads!


    • Thanks for finding me! I feel the same way when my kids are running through the house like a heard of dancing and singing rhinos but when it is over I think, how nice it would be to hear one more song. I’m glad you enjoyed it. Thanks for coming by!


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