Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Another day as a Mother

I have been in a funk.  Life has been busy and I have been just hangin' in there. Shawn has been working so hard for our family and he is wrapping up all his duties as a principal, which means he is working late hours and rarely home before bed on the weekdays.  During the week, the kids have all the end of the year preschool activities, my bible study is wrapping up, we have T-ball and swim lessons, and on the weekends there have been family birthdays, retirement parties, graduations...and on and on. I am tired...I look at the calendar ahead and get exhausted.
Enter Mother's Day.  I sat in the van, near tears, just thinking to myself...I need a break.  I love my family and they were doing everything they could (okay, well maybe the kids weren't doing everything they could...Amanda was all out of sorts and the boys were declaring inane accusations such as "He looked at me"...but Shawn was sure trying and the kids had made me nice cards and asked what I wanted to do for the day) to make my day special.  And all I could think was...I want time alone.  This thought, just added to the tears, because I felt so guilty!  I kept thinking in my head...I love these guys, I should want to be with them, right? 
I could not figure out what is wrong.  I really do love my family dearly.  I am proud of my husband and the job he does.  I am proud of my kiddos.  I love watching them learn, grow, and take on life.  BUT, (you knew that was coming), I just wanted a car ride without fifty questions, I wanted to go to the bathroom alone, I wanted to read a book, wander the aisles of a store at a leisurely pace...just looking.  I wanted to track my thoughts and not feel the need to write it down in case I forgot.  I didn't want to ask someone to stop doing something and I didn't want to put on anyone's shoes but my own.  I wanted to get out of the car with just me and my purse...no one else's coat, shoe, paci, garbage, craft, special toy or whatever else was left in the car.  I didn't want to answer the phone, make one more appointment, schedule one more thing or go to one more activity.  And I felt so selfish. 
I have discussed this with a few friends and they are so sweet, offering to take my kids for a few hours.  I say, "no".  I already feel like I have had to lean on friends enough, for eye appointments, feild trips and vairous other things that I can't have all three with me.  I also feel like I should give back to them in some way, but our life is so full right now, it just doesn't seem possible.  It seems silly for me to say, "Yes, please watch my kids so I can just get away, but just know right now I can't return the favor."  However, today, I caved.  I just said "Yes, thank you." 
It was humbling.  I felt like I was saying, "I can't do it."  But the reality is, "I can't do it alone."  I am not sure why I feel like I should, but more often than not I do.  I want to feel like I am there for my kids.  After pondering my attitude on Mother's day, I came to the realization, that being there for them, meant taking a break and getting some rest, so that I can be there for them, not just physically, but emotionally too.  I also felt like I wasn't being a good friend, if I let my friends pick up my slack.  However, I know I would want to do it for them and bless them.  Why is it that allowing them to bless me, is so hard to swallow?  I am not sure.  But I am swallowing it. 
I am still processing this lesson.  I am not entirely sure what I am supposed to be learning.  Humility...check.  It has been hard.  Gratefulness...check.  I have been given the most amazing group of incredibley loving and gracious friends.  God really has given me the wackiest, most wonderful support system.  I think there are a few more checks out there that God wants me to mark off...I am not sure what they are, but my spirit says He is working on something in me and I am praying I can remain open and humble to hear it.
In the meantime, as my friend Stephanie said, "You don't have to wear your cape all the time. Take it off."  This made me laugh.  I asked her if I can still wear a tiara.  All in all, I think I am going to chuck it for a some lounge wear and a good cup of coffee...which I will drink in silence all by myself and come back ready for a lot of days as a mother.

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