Tuesday, September 16, 2014

One Step at a Time

I was thinking about a lot of things tonight. Cameron scored advance screening tickets for us to The Maze Runner tonight, but we couldn't find a sitter, so I stayed home with the kids so he could have some relaxed time to himself. Truth be told, I didn't try very hard to find a sitter. I don't mind missing a movie here or there and Cam really just loves movies. Heaven knows his brain works overtime during the day, and a little quiet where his wife isn't whispering in his ear is needed sometimes. And I am finding it harder and harder to enjoy watching TV and movies. It's something I'm actually super happy about. Normally, I have four or five shows I'm watching at any given time. Right now, we are watching ONE. One show. Royal Pains on Netflix. And I watch it with Cameron. I used to put the kids down for their afternoon nap, grab my lunch, head upstairs, waste time finding my show to put on, and veg for a few hours in the afternoon, sometimes designing or working on other projects, but for the most part I just watched. And heaven forbid I was out of shows to watch. That was enough to put me in a terrible mood. It dawned on me today that I have been back from Arizona for over a week now, and I haven't watched a single show on my own. I'm so proud of that. And I intend to keep it that way. Does it really matter if I find out who wins the Biggest Loser or who the next Bachelor is? What will I be missing out on? Plus, I am so filled with this desire to create lately, I hate to be distracted when I get a few hours to work. I have dragon hooded towels to make for the boys, a sheep eared beanie to make for Tenley, more blog design ideas than I can count that I really would love to get out of my head and onto the screen, home videos to compile to DVD, an entire home organization workbook to apply, recipes to try, a garage sale to organize, books to read, classes I want to take, skills I want to develop [calligraphy and font making for starters], my 2013 and 2014 family yearbooks to finish [chatbooks didn't work out for me. Not enough space for journaling], a scripture study workbook course I love to focus on, and the three most beautiful kiddos to mother when they're awake. Never before have I honestly felt that there really just isn't enough time in the day to waste on television or movies. It's so exciting to me to be on an upward spiral instead of a downward one. It's addicting. It's empowering.

After each baby, there is a definite day where I realize the newborn fog has been lifted and I, as a mom, have settled into the new addition to our family. The energy that comes from that realization puts me on such a high and it causes so much positivity in every aspect of my life. The boys were nuts today, but I had patience with them. Nash had a hard time falling asleep and was crying. Instead of getting after him, I brought both Nash and Gray a chocolate chip and we sang a few songs, snuggled, and had a quick tickle fight. By the end of it, Nash called out "night night, mama! Love you!" tear free as I shut their door. Loving, patient mothering is so filling to me. Today wasn't perfect. It wasn't even close. But I am so filled. I love the mother I am today. It is such a hard job some days. It is tiring. It is demanding. But oh, it is rich.

Being a mother is such an interesting experience to me. It is a job that is motivated by such an intense love that there is no possible way you can feel like you've done everything these beautiful little ones deserve. There is always more to be done. However, today I understand that just because I haven't done everything does not mean I'm doing a poor job. I am a great mom because I am trying. I am trying to teach my children to love each other and themselves and their Heavenly Father and Savior. I am trying to help them understand the world around them. I am trying to feed them healthy food. I am trying to exercise their brains and their bodies. I am trying to help them feel secure in my love. But most of all, I am trying. And I really think that's what counts.

I'm surprised at how often I think about the spouses my children will have someday. In my mind, there are three other young mothers raising crazy kids right now and just trying to do right by these little ones that they love. I feel so connected to these other women. And I love them so much for trying day in and day out.

In my kitchen, there's a print I made when we were going through the brunt of infertility. It reads Alma 36:20-21.

 20 And oh, what joy, and what marvelous light I did behold; yea, my soul was filled with joy as exceeding as was my pain!
 21 Yea, I say unto you, my son, that there could be nothing so exquisite and so bitter as were my pains. Yea, and again I say unto you, my son, that on the other hand, there can be nothing so exquisite and sweet as was my joy.

I always thought the pains and the joy occurred at two very separate times. For example, I was filled with deep pain when battling infertility, and it made the sweetness of our children's births completely joyous, marvelous, and exquisite. However, today I have been thinking about how Motherhood operates on the two extremes often at exactly the same time. I can honestly say my heart breaks on a daily basis. But it also swells to the point of bursting in the same day. My heart breaks over my own inadequacy as a mother. It breaks for the world my children are growing up in. It breaks because my children are growing at all, but in the very same moment it swells because they are growing, too! Being a mother is the richest experience of my life. I am so grateful I get to experience this. So blessed. 

Another step forward I made today is when Cam was gone, I didn't make him feel guilty about it when he came home. All too often, I throw a [super mature] fit when Cam is out late at night at a class/seminar/studying/rare guy's night. Like he somehow owes me something now. Grow up, Kristin. Come on, now! Tonight, I encouraged him to go to the show without me. He came home to a happy wife in a messy house. But I was happy. And I think he'd rather have a happy, exhausted wife than a clean house anyhow. In fact, I know he would, which is why I didn't clean it. He operates at such a high level, I sometimes forget he's human. Our life is pretty stressful. We are both pulled a million different directions each and every day. Sometimes I forget that I'm not the only one who deals with a ton of stress. Selfish as it may be, that's the honest truth. Today, I was aware of him. I'm grateful my eyes were opened to that. And I am so grateful he got the chance to relax. 

I'm getting the hang of this wife and mom thing. At least I feel that way today. Which probably means tomorrow will be a humbling day. But if i just focus on the baby steps forward, we'll be just fine. 

I wouldn't trade this life for the world. You can't buy the feeling that fills our home tonight. Everyone is tucked in tight and the peace is tangible because I'm honestly in love with every imperfect bit. 

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing your thoughts Kristin! I totally agree about getting sucked into tv and shows. It keeps us from doing things that will make us more fulfilled and help us grow. And I'm with ya on those adult fits. I'm married to one of those super-humans too so it's easy to forget that he gets stressed too and I'm not the only one. Definitely something I could work on. Thanks for bringing it to my attention!