Not long ago, my life was like playing in the sand… unrestricted, time passed slowly, I had little to worry about, and new friends came in and out to share the fun.
Although this may seem exciting; it’s not as rewarding as watching your son build sand castles and dig new routes for his trucks to drive through. We have full conversations about how he plans on loading the sand on the truck and how that will hopefully not empty out one side of the park -Alex is 3 and worries that he will run out of sand.
I think about all the time I’ve wasted maintaining unhealthy friendships that I knew would lead no where. I thank God for the realization that I just have no time for that. My priorities are different. People would ask me to do things all the time and I would agree because I felt like I had to. Motherhood teaches you how to say NO real fast. I am constantly saying NO to my kids; why shouldn’t I be able to do the same with adults who should understand that no means no?
I remember my friend Kay telling me when I was pregnant that Motherhood can be a lonely job. WHAT? How can it be lonely when they have all these cute things to play with and do with your kids? Oh.. all the places I’d go… all the things I would do…
Much of what I’ve learned these past 5 years has been about myself. What type of spouse am I going to be so I can contribute to a solid, healthy, and trusting marriage? What kind of parent do I want to be? How am I going to live my life so it positively impacts my family?
At times, I get upset that for a long time I believed the lie that a woman can do everything. The reality is that while we can do everything, it can’t be done all at once. I work from home around naps, laundry, and carpool lines. I work outside the home on Fri & Sat nights when my husband is home to care of our children. Yes, clothes tend to pile up, receipts don’t get entered into quicken as fast as my husband would like, and I don’t feel like I get everything done in my to-do list I set out to accomplish.
I’ve grown more humble about life with motherhood. I’ve switched gears from living a ‘me’ focused life to a ‘we’ focused one. I’m continuously learning to take one step at a time in the things I’m already committed to. While I know I must hold on to what I have before I reach for something else ahead of me on the road; sometimes the adventures of life are too fun to pass up.
How adventurous life can be when you open up a map and choose to go to grad school somewhere you’ve never been before that might seem ‘fun’? New Orleans has offered me so much more than a good time, food, and southern hospitality.
Who would have thought that someone like me with an MBA, speak 4 languages, have traveled extensively and lived in the east and west coasts would end up in southern suburbia?
While I may struggle to keep track of everything I have going on right now, I am certainly not complaining. Life is what I make it to be regardless of the circumstances.
Motherhood is much more than just packing lunches, cleaning clothes, carpool and after-school activities. It’s a time for us women to grow into the person we want to become. It is true that kids are like sponges, constantly absorbing from their environment, therefore we mothers open and close the water spout. Learning to let go of the perfectionist in me is an ongoing process that I’ve realized it’s a whole lot easier when I’m enjoying the ride.
I’m grateful for the days that ‘work’ gets put on hold -usually till after the kids go to bed- and I get to take my son to the park. Those are good days. Unproductive? maybe. But productivity is only relative when you have kids and are not clocking in and out.
Like they say in New Orleans… “Laissez les bons temps rouler”
This piece feels like a stream of conscience piece to me–as though you were reflecting on motherhood and how you fit into the role without filtering the flow of thoughts. I think that is a nice fit for a piece on motherhood because we are constantly evaluating ourselves and our situation and since kids grow so quickly we are constantly bombarded with new information.
Great observation. It was a reflection on motherhood.
Elizabeth Flora Ross
This is a beautiful post. I was raised to believe I could do everything. Then one day I came to realize that I could not do everything well. That’t the kicker, I believe. Something would suffer, no matter how hard I tried. I decided the one thing I did not want to suffer was motherhood. So now I am the last thing I ever expected to be – a SAHM. The decision was agonzing. The transition was difficult. But the payoff is sweet! Nothing I have accomplished in my life matters more than being my daughter’s mom.
Thank you Elizabeth! You are so right! Something always suffers….and somehow we ‘feel guilty’ when we make the decision to stay home to raise our kids. So what if we have a masters degree? it’s only money. our kids grow FAST and I just don’t want to miss the moments. I stay home and I work. I work and I stay home. Always around my kids. Glad you are there with me!