My friend Hay Hay is an inspiration to all who know her. She is a bouncing ball of happiness. I have always admired her sweetness, fearlessness, and positive outlook. She is also a great writer. I find truth and motivation in the things she says. This is what being a mom is to Hay Hay.
What is my thing?…
Becoming a mom is an interesting shifting of the universe.
Before the shift, life was all about my interests. I could do whatever I wanted to do. I could become whatever I wanted to be. I did “my thing,” and I truly didn’t think that what I did made that big of a difference in the universe.
Then this happened.
It makes me laugh actually. I look at Claire and her little body with her big spirit staring at me, and I laugh because that is what I do when I feel that surge of emotion, that love. It is this feeling that is so hard to describe, except by saying it matters. My thing is these guys.
I can still become whatever I want to be, but it is different now. My time isn’t always mine. In fact it isn’t mine most of the time. It matters what I do and say and choose. My daily decisions matter so much, because it isn’t just my life anymore. My thing is this thing called motherhood, and this deserves the best I have to give. It is the most important thing.
Sometimes it is daunting looking at the three little souls I have in my keep. It is a lot of pressure trying to figure out their different needs.
It is understandable why moms have a really hard time with this shift. Going from being an island to having a life that is not your own takes some getting used to. There are moments when I wonder if I’ve lost myself and my identity. I’m not exactly the same solemn skiing, snowboarding, cliff jumper. It is frustrating to think about loosing a part of yourself that you love. The trick is to remember that the things that truly matter I can still have in my life, and the new me I’m creating today is worth the sacrifice. When I take time to be inspired and quiet I realize, I’ve found myself.
Being a mom is emotionally and physically exhausting sometimes. It can be so stinking hard, but it is comforting to realize that anything of great worth is going to be hard work. It is a calling, and it is a gift.
My dearest friend Sarah with her website Play with your Family asked me what my thing is as a mom. What do I do with these little special creatures? There are many answers to that question. For today I came up with five.
1. Be wild As Mary Oliver said,What is it you plan to dowith your one wild and precious life?We only have this one life we are given. It is wild and unpredictable at times, so I think that means that we must be that way also. One of my dearest loves about being a mom is that I have permission to rock it, and to act like a complete fool. I can groove, cartwheel, laugh, and impersonate with absolutely nothing to be embarrassed about. My children don’t judge. In fact, this fuels their creativity and zest for life. If they see me being spontaneous, it gives them the permission to do the same. They learn that spontaneity is the spice of life. They learn that it is okay to be joyful.
2. Cut out stuff that is not important.Doing this is easier said than done. It is so easy to waste time on things that are eternally and temporally useless. Honestly, this one is one I’m constantly trying to improve. Some days I don’t get on the computer for this very reason. It is so easy to get sucked in by face book, blogs, and pinterest. I don’t think these things are bad at all, but they certainly can suck me in. There are other things that also try to distract me from being a good momma. I think the best thing to do about this is to say a little prayer first thing as I get out of bed in the morning that I’ll focus on what’s most important. It also helps me to write myself a little list the night before of the most important things for the following day.
3. Do what I love with my kids.I don’t want to loose old parts of myself that I love. So I try and do them with my kids. Somethings are hard, but I feel like my kids will love to know me and my loves, and maybe they’ll learn to love them to. I like to write and read, so Jake and I love to make up crazy stories where we take turns adding parts and twists. I want to practice the piano more, so I’ve recently got out my old beginner books to teach Jake, then practice myself. I want to practice the guitar more. My most recent goal is to learn songs the boys can sing along to. When I want to get my craft on, I usually get the boys their own craft to do alongside of me in the garage or out on the back deck. The last time I did this Jake ended up painting his green slide a lovely shade of blue while I had my back turned.
4. RESTBeing well rested is beautiful medicine to prevent any mom from being cranky, resentful, or lifeless. My mother-in-law gave me the fabulous book It’s Okay to Take a Nap. There are some words to live by in that one let me tell ya. As a mom with young kids, a 15 minute power nap with Jake midday is seriously just what I need to see the light again.
5. Choose to be happy.I chose to be a mom, so these guys deserve to feel like I want them around everyday. I see in their eyes that my happiness is seriously all they need right now. For that reason I have to do things that keep my own happy bucket filled. For me it’s hard not to be happy it I stare into these deep baby blues for a bit.
Life is so good. My universe has certainly shifted since the arrival of my three little ones. These little guys gravitate towards me and look to me to learn about life and love. This is an important job, and it is so worth it. It is worth it enough to enjoy it as we live it.