Mothering...and other memories
I recently read an article in a religious magazine about a mother who, much like an employee at a corporation, turned in her 'resignation, effective today' to her family. In the resignation, she detailed how she could no longer 'work under such conditions' and was feeling overwhelmed by the number of constituents under her. While the article was written completely in jest, it got me thinking about this life of motherhood. Mothering (in particular, family-making and the formative years) are quite the challenge. I myself am considering writing a book chronicling the years I am spending raising my God-given gifts called children. I do not have sufficient enough material yet to write said book, but I already have a working title. It will be called, "Outnumbered: raising kids without raising hell". But I digress... In my recent attempts to find the balance (that, I've been told, "will come") in dividing time between 2 kids and housework, I have been employing some new strategies. One of which is "Get up before the kids do and get a few things done". Whether its getting a cup of Joe, reading the Bible, or taking a shower, getting something done before the children awake and begin requesting things has been suggested as helpful. I have discovered that this is not possible. You see, the children either have a "Mommy-Cam" through which they see you when you attempt to rise before them OR they have a string which is tied to your foot, and when you rise it rings a bell like Liberty to awaken them from their slumber in order that they might greet you at your bedroom door before you even come into the hallway. Oh well, it was a nice try. I have found myself amazed in the last 11 weeks at what can be accomplished in one day with my hands and the Lord's favor. Serving up 3 meals a day, to suit everyones tastes and likes. At least 1-2 loads of laundry done, folded, and put away. The perpetually endless cycle of dishes in and out of the dishwasher. Remembering our vitamins. The perpetually endless cycle of diaper changing. Looking for hidden toys that I swear I saw out in plain sight just yesterday. Clamoring to find any bit of time I can to spend with the love of my life. Remembering to brush teeth. Looking for that toy again! Paying bills. Giving lots of hugs and kisses. Reading God's word. Slowing down long enough to play a game or to "watch this, Mommy!" Orchestrating naps. All this and more, while at the same time independently manufacturing my own brand of enough milk to keep a growing baby alive. Whew! Maybe I should change my working title to "Circus Cow: Moo!" Orchestrating naps, an oxymoron if there ever was one. When I was pregnant with my second child, I would often wonder what it was like to have 2 young kids. I dreamed of a magic place, one where the children both napped at the same time. And I thought, "Yes! That is how these Moms make it; they put their children down for naps at the same time." What I now realize is that when my son leans over my baby daughter to give her a kiss, he is also whispering to her about the "kid's code of conduct" which I believe states that one child must be awake at all times while Mom is in the house. My baby girl has willingly complied and my oldest has refused to change his ways. At the end of the day, after all the hugs and kisses have been doled out, after the last nursing session, and after all teeth have been brushed, when it is just me lying next to that love of my life...the circus of nap dilemmas and outnumbered situations give way to a heart of gratitude. The lives entrusted into my care, including my husband's, are priceless. As the mother of 2 wonderful children, I am overwhelmed with sweetness and affection. As the wife of an Army Chaplain, I am overwhelmed with pride for my husband and my country. As the child of the King, I am overwhelmed with His love. Maybe I should change that working title, yet again, to "Overwhelmed: blessed beyond measure".