This article, from New York Magazine, raises a lot of the questions I ask myself all the time. When I’m in the middle of a miserable parenting moment, do I think of my childless friends who are able to go to a movie or pick up at a moment’s notice and fly to New York because the fares are low? Sometimes.

Do I envy people whose houses are always clean, whose cars are free of smooshed goldfish crackers and chewed up lollipop sticks? Yeah. I do.

Would I trade my kids for any of that stuff? No way. Without the miserable moments, I wouldn’t get to sniff a clean kid head, kiss a soft cheek, teach a kid a card game or splash in a kiddie pool.

I’m not denying that much of parenting sucks. It’s just that the (admittedly few) high points more than make up for the low points. And lonely? Well, that’s something I can be guaranteed not to feel for many years to come.