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Testing, Testing, is this Parent On ?

This first week of school is notoriously rough for our youngest. There are new teachers, new routines, and new buses to acquaint themselves with. And I fully expect our train to derail somewhere in the middle of back to school week. I was slightly mistaken in that there weren’t as many neurotic breakdowns and a crying fits. But the weekend brought me the brunt of the week with not so fab behavioral choices.

The tall one was seemingly good until we found he’d smuggled his phone up to his room for late night phone poking and gaming which is against my rules. He did not try to hide it. I am holding the phone every day this week after school. He conceded to this punishment without question.

The small one, she brings on the fits and the tantrums fast and furious these days. I felt like my weekend was usurped by these fits. Every time I turned around, she was mad about something (My theory that she’s happiest when she’s unhappy resurfaced). Last week, her constant lack of appreciation for gifts received got her a week long hold on asking for anything. So she’d say she would like something and then when I shut her down, she’s say, “Wishing’s not wanting Mom.” The heck it isn’t sassy pants.Testing, Testing, is this Parent On ? on Shalavee.com

I can barely contain my giddiness sometimes when I get her onto the bus in the morning. Because, for 7 hours, I’m not going to be used as a punching bag to find out where her boundaries stop and mine start. I understand the necessity of their pushing and my pushing back to show them they are loved and safe, but parenting is an exhausting gauntlet through their childhoods. A relentless journey into the irritable and seemingly unnecessary woods we’ve long since forgotten we’d navigated ourselves.

But navigate they must, testing us all the way, to find out how important and loved they are so they can take that in a to-go package to use for the rest of their lives. Just give me a few hours off each week please.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Labor of Mom Love

My sister asked if I had any plans for the day. I said nah, I’m not doing anything. Just my regular stuff, no big deal. And she says, I would say you do a lot of stuff and a big deal. And I realize that I just belittled myself and all the hard work I put into my house that I do make it look clean and easy.

I am at the store with my son and he asks if this half a cart full of groceries is a regular size shop. I ask if he knows how many meals a week I am responsible for. 21 meals and that includes any that I have to pay for at his school via the computer. Multiply that by four people. But I just expect I must do this because that’s what I do.

I don’t think there’s any occupation that takes itself more for granted than motherhood. Mother’s Day Needs to be a week in which everyone else takes over the Mom’s job so they actually experience the ridiculousness of it.labor of Mom Love on Shalavee.com

But in the same breath, it is also up to us to wean and train our families to rely on us less. To show them the necessity of chores and hygiene to maintain self-respect. To encourage them to claim confidence in this adulting thing.

Labors of Love are always a given with me. But I also have scolded my children for taking advantage of my kindness and generosity. I model self-respect so that they may do the same to their children later.

So this is my Ode to Motherhood, the Labor of Love that we are guilty of taking for granted. May you enjoy lots of it in your life.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

She Said She Truly Loved Herself

It is an immense joy to talk with women in all sorts of places about their lives. I strike up conversations in stores or online about so many facets of living as a woman and a mother and I always come away feeling like we are searching for the same connection. Our future depends on this.

During a visit to my bank recently, I had a candid conversation with a lovely hard working mother of eight children. I spoke about liking myself. She said she not only liked herself, she truly loved herself, and I wondered what that was like.She said she truly loved herself on Shalavee.com

We all start in different places in our lives. Many of us are more disadvantaged than we realize in our beginning. And we have farther to grow to gain what other children are easily given. Self-love is one of those gifts.

I know it does our world and our children no good to be so hard on ourselves. The disrespect and judgment we show ourselves will only poison the next generation to do the same. The answer is always in love. That if we shower ourselves in love and compassion, our children will do the same.

This lovely bank lady? She’s showing all eight of those children how it is to treat a lady. She is proud and beautiful albeit slightly unsure of the problems her forties will bring her. I am staring down the barrel of 53 years and feeling frustrated that my body wants to spread out in my skin. I ask the nurses to please not tell me what my weight is, thank you.She said she truly loved herself on Shalavee.com

But Love myself? I think that is a darn good goal. In fact, I’d venture to say it’s the most important goal any of us can achieve that will ensure our happily ever afters. The lovely Mom at the bank has given me a goal to work on harder than any goal I’ve ever worked on. Self-Love.

 

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

Motherhood is a Choice, Not Mandatory

Mother’s Day was a hoot this year. Mark made sure that my every need was overly taken care of. My children said they loved me every half hour and I got thee wishes plus one more fulfilled. Household tasks I would otherwise be blown off for asking were taken care of speedily like sorting through a pile of paperwork and reattaching my newel post. And I only went shopping and cooked a tenderloin and a pie. The rests of the meals were taken care of by my family.

Motherhood is a Choice, Not Mandatory on Shalavee.com

But I also understand that Mother’s Day is one of those holidays that not everyone celebrates. Especially if they themselves have chosen not to be a mother.

Jenny Brown, a woman I am friends with on Instagram, in response to conversations about her choice not to choose motherhood but instead chose to devote herself to her art, said this,

“To all of us who have been told that not having kids is “selfish,” who had strangers wish them a Happy Mother’s Day yesterday without even them even knowing if you have a child, and for those like me who chose not to have a child but instead nurture their art, please stand proud. And remember, being a mom is not a requirement of being a woman. When people ask me if I’m sad or feel like I “missed out,” in my heart I know those questions often come from the speaker’s own anxiety on missing out on opportunities, dreams, and travels they didn’t take. I’m so thankful I don’t feel that way about my life ❤️”.

first and 2nd week of the 2019 100 Day project on Shalavee.com
Day 15 of the 100 Day Challenge 2019

Motherhood is an option that not all women choose to follow through with. Just because you can doesn’t mean you must if it’s not right for you. While I feel for the many who would like to have kids and either can’t or are terrified to try, I also know that my creativity wouldn’t have been nourished as well as if I hadn’t had kids.

Motherhood is a Choice, Not Mandatory on Shalavee.com

Creative women often throw out their creative endeavors to keep their children “alive”. A double edged sword because, if you aren’t expressing your authenticity, you may be dying a slow death inside which the children will definitely pick up on and copy later in life. And what it takes to keep them actually alive becomes less and less about alive and more about “comfortable”, aka spoiling them. We give up ourselves for fear of not giving them the best life we could. Not worth the price because the best life would be to model our entitlement to our creative gals, wouldn’t it?

Motherhood is a huge mind mess and everyone would be happier to stand by their choice to be in it all the way, or stay right the heck out of it and cheer us mothers on. Because either way, it is a choice,

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

My Purposeful Life as Mother

I have long been frustrated with my fearful self. I’m so smart and so talented so need to make an impact on the world. Let everyone know who I am and what I know. And if I don’t, I’m a loser. It’s the smart girl’s sabotage. It’s the knife I perpetually hold to my throat.

And then the other day, Fiona and I were returning from the library, she ahead of me climbing the hill beside the steps, and I realized she was so deserving of the purpose she is for me. I devote and leave so much of my life open to her. I do not need the recognition. I just need her to take her fierce self out in the world and be happy.

My Purposeful Life as  Mother on shalavee.com

I believe that I am addicted to being unhappy with myself. I think many women are. But there isn’t one thing wrong with not wanting to overextend yourself. Wanting to be available for the people you love knowing that that availability is the implicit understanding of motherhood.

But I also know that we so often, so easily could use our motherly duties to abandon ourselves. Not pursue our creativity because they are so much more important. I will not condone modeling martyrdom for our children. I can say that I have battled and won a creativity entitlement and practice battle with myself in the years that I’ve had and been raising Fiona. She sees me indulging that constantly and she does too. But I also don’t have to capture the moon to know that my life is worthwhile.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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