To tell you the truth “momming” does not come naturally to me. It’s something I have felt guilt about in the past:
· that others do it so much better than I and actually enjoy it while they are making it look so easy.
· that it's supposed to be natural and effortless, something I should feel like I was born to do.
· that it’s NOT something I should have to work so hard on.
· that it’s not something I WANT to do every day.
I am not downplaying being a mom for one second. I wouldn’t change it for the whole wide world. It is a blessing beyond belief. The morning snuggles, the carpool rides with smashed snacks in the car, lots of laughter, the family adventure trips and seeing your kids learn new things, and so much more.
But I would be lying if I didn't tell you it’s hard, exhausting, and self -sacrificing on so many levels We all preface it with, it’s so worth it, and it is, but dang it is hard.
But sometimes I catch these little glimpses that take my breath away.
Every morning I say two words to my kids:
EYES WIDE, LIGHTS SHINE
It’s usually me screaming out the door as they head to the bus stop. And I will see them look back and smile, the smile with a roll of the eyes, (“Mom, you say this every day”.)
It means to keep your eyes wide open to others today. On the playground, in the lunchroom, in your classroom, on your sport’s field.
Scan the room before you sit down or play with your friends. See if there is anyone who needs your light today.
The glimpses come when a mom texts me and says she was volunteering on the playground and heard my daughter stand up for another child in front of all her friends, that gives me pause.
Maybe I am cut out for this.
Maybe they are really listening.
It’s when my son questions and can’t make sense of why some are homeless, and then asks us to give our house to them, since we are moving anyway. Might as well give it away rather than sell it.
These are the times I melt into my role as mom, even though that word encompasses so much. It’s these little glimpses of compassion and empathy that I have so prayed for my kids to have ingrained in them. And just seeing it for a few moments makes me realize I am exactly who they need, even if it doesn’t’ always feel like I might be cut out for this.
I think I just wanted to let other moms know who are in the throws of mommy-hood that it’s ok to feel exhausted, tired, and even like you weren’t made to do this thing. The little, the teen, the adult years are not for the faint of heart.
There will be days when you feel like you GOT IT, and days you have no idea why you were asked to be these kids’ mom, because you are most certain you will screw them up.
Other things may come easier to you and you may compare yourself to others. You probably haven’t slept very well, or taken a shower in Lord knows how long. And although those days come and go, there will be glimpses and experiences where you sit back and you can’t believe you get to watch these little ones come into their own, and it starts to mean something, and then it starts to mean everything and you soak it in and, breathe deep and think I'm doing just fine...