Friday, April 1, 2011

These are my thoughts

I had a discussion with my sister in law on Wednesday while she was inflicting great physical pain on me. Or, maybe she was just waxing my eyebrows, but anyway, we were talking. We were talking about being a mom, raising kids, etc. She said that sometimes she feels like she's "just a mom". I responded with something like being a mom is noble, worthwhile, and I think some other stuff, but I really can't remember. I hope it was profound. Anyway, I tried to offer some words of wisdom that my 11 more years then her of life have given me.

I could totally relate to what she was saying because oh boy, have I been there! The first time it really hit me was when Cameron was just a few months old. I was coming off a whirlwind of a couple of years where I suddenly found myself with not only a husband, but 2 kids and we were living in our first house. I was living the adult life for real and in the process of becoming one, I kind of lost contact with the adult world, minus my husband and immediate family, and I wasn't very happy about it. I told Ryan that I needed to get out and interact with others and I needed to do it soon. Otherwise, he would feel my pain. Thankfully, he took the hint and stepped aside so I could figure out how to be more than "just a mom". And I did. But I also found that just being a mom isn't a bad thing. It's noble and worthwhile and all the other things I think I said to my sister in law. ☺ that I've said that, and after pondering that conversation for the past 2 days, I've come to a realization about myself. I had an epiphany, if you will, and what it revealed to me didn't necessarily make me happy.

Yes, I've learned over 11 years of mothering that I am more than just a mom. So very much more, but that's not what I have a problem with. I have a problem with the way I'm being a mom, unfortunately.

I treat mothering as job. I'm way too business like about it. That's not to say that I'm not affectionate with my kids. Because I am. I hug them and kiss them and tell them I love them all the time. They know I love them. What I realized I don't do often enough is just be with them. I go from one day to the next, doing all the things I should do, but I don't take the time enjoy it. I hold myself back from really being with them because I have the next item on my to do list on my mind. Sometimes, I don't listen all that closely to them because I'm too worried about what I'm making for dinner, the laundry I'm currently folding, the floors I'm trying to vacuum, etc. That's just not right and I've resolved to change it.

Yesterday, I took the time to lay in my bed with Peyton and just watch Spongebob. I didn't do anything else. I didn't think about anything else. I really paid attention and responded and interacted with him when he made comments. I was there and it was fun. Imagine that. Yes, laundry and dishes and a shower for myself were put off, but it didn't matter because I was being a mom. And the world didn't end because of it.

I'm going to try to truly be present each and every moment of each and every day. Yes, my children can exasperate, annoy, anger, wear me out, like no others. But they can also entertain me, make me laugh, love me and change me for the better like no others and that's the way it's supposed to be. I'm a mom and I love it.


Jillene said...

That light bulb went off in my head this year when I realized that my baby was going to be in Kindergarten very soon. I might not always look my very best and my house might not either, but I am doing the most important thing and that is being there for and with my kids. I really LOVE this post!!

Kristen said...

I loved this post as well. I do the same thing only I yell at them when the house is a mess insted of just enjoying them. When is the last time that I made playdough and sat and played with them instead of using it as a distraction while I hurried to get a batch of laundry folded. I need to be a different kind of mom on some days as well. I think it is about finding balance because if I still need to make sure my house doesn't turn into the yucky, gross house that my kids are embarassed to have their friends come over.

Mrs. John Sutton said...

Very well put. I too find myself doing these same things. My 'epiphany' was at the swimming pool when even John said all I ever do it "sit" there (I don't swim). Then I realized that it's not about swimming. It's about interacting with my children. So, rather than watch Sophie swim, she and I now swim and play in the water together.
Of course, there's a lot more to it than the swimming pool, but I thought it was a nice start.

Heather said...

Good for you! A couple years ago I was asked to speak in church for mother's day so I had to find some good quotes etc. I came across this gem that is now my motto: "Think of the doing, rather than the getting it done."

I really try to ponder and relish in the childhood I get to see and the fact that I'm blessed to be home with them.

Good post.

Rebecca: said...

I don't know how I missed this post! Thanks, for the reminder, Christa. Even after 20 years of being a mom I need to be reminded. :)