WHEN ALL THE KIDS ARE ASLEEP I sometimes have these panic seconds of what do I do now? It’s like a timed riddle to solve with only one right answer. I could read, write, snack, sleep. Or all of the above! Of course, no work allowed. I fear destroying the sacred hour doing what doesn’t recharge me like sitting on Facebook.
Last night I got up 2x with my baby. Once at 11:30 and then again at 12. This made me frustrated and tired. I think one of the hardest times to get up is right after you just fell asleep. (Then again, 3AM was hard too back when I was nursing a newborn.)
Thirty minutes later she fussed again and I was highly frustrated. We just did this scene. Go to sleep baby girl!
Stumbling around the living room, stepping on toys and kicking who knows what, (insert mental note to pick up toys before going to bed next time!) it flashed through my mind, this is my life. Nothing too Freudian, but I was challenged right then to stop wishing this hard moment to quickly pass.
I tried to open my stinging eyes. The right eyelid seemed to be glued down partially so I squinted stupidly trying to breathe in and settle with my reality. Hugging my squishy baby a little tighter I held her warm body in my arms and drew in her scent.
I am fighting the popular opinion that life is meant to be JUST fun and happy 110% of the time. And don’t forget easy. Your life should be easy (or at least look it.) I want to wash that ideology clean from my mind and take on an unpopular opinion that I’m allowed to have the hard, too.
Hard makes up the other part of my existence equation. Right now I really, really want to be passed this baby waking up in the night stage. I really want to push the fast forward button. But, like on a map though, my red dot is ‘here’ and by wishing it somewhere else, I’ll miss this.
Outside the winds sweeps through the trees, delivering it’s hot breath across Hackberry street. I feel it’s warmth at the door. I step outside, baby pressed against my hip and it rushes over me. These are hot June summer days. With my life I can choose to feel what I want, ignore the rest or I can feel it all. I hold my head high, longing to taste and savor this moment, this day, no matter how heated externally or internally. I want to live my one wild and precious life.
Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?
Last night I mowed the yard. I didn’t think it was too hot to march back and forth the front lawn. I didn’t think it was too hot after the sun had slipped from its place, high in the sky, but I was wrong. My arms and shoulders were jostled around as I bounced across the yard. Exerting real man force, sticking my rear-end out as I mustered up all my own physical self-propelled energy I had in me. I came inside afterwards feeling like I was boiling from the inside out. It was like a work-out in a sauna at the rec.
Mowing the yard is satisfying for me. I always loved it. Growing up if I had an option, I’d choose mowing. I love the workout, the mental recess. Cutting, pushing, full-body workout and in the end you can see the progress right away. That’s my reward. That and a refreshing cool shower.
Like raising kids. It’s hard work but in the end you’ll see results, right?
I’m guilty of saying I can’t wait until my kid is that age or until they are in school or whatever the next thing is. I’m discovering life never entirely turns out how you plan or dream it. Every stage has its hard parts as well as smooth.
Having kids is just that for me. When I mentally imagined parenting, I inserted all my memories and prerogatives from playing with my niece and nephews, babysitting and teaching school. Now as a real parent, I grow weary of my kids and they aren’t funny when they do the same joke 57 times. They aren’t cute when they hit my face, scratch my eye balls out or can’t stay sitting at the supper table. Living with kids verses babysitting are two very different things.
Since my actual mom life is different from I thought it would be, I have to intentionally detect things I’m grateful for. Sometimes it’s not hard to see when instead it finds me and I almost fall over with uncontrollable laughter or it’s just there in front of me and my heart nearly pops out of my chest with pride.
Other times I have to let go of perfection and what makes reasonable sense or has a point. I have to embrace my ridiculously wild and precious life and hug all the little moments I can before this day is gone and those shoulders are no longer here.