It’s 7am. Soon my 14 month old is about to get up. Is that late for you? Do your mornings start much earlier? Sometimes I try to get up before her but most days I wish I did actually. I miss my morning routine from last fall. I have faith that one day we’ll get something like it back.
FACT: With little ones in the house, the morning routine is always changing.
We snuggled together on the couch, ate breakfast and I was able to read my book, The Broken Way, by Ann Voskamp. To some of you that might sound like a relaxing morning, especially those of you that have to get up and get to work by sunrise AM.
Later Gavin wakes up, Cali and I do our best snuggling his boney limbs, then we decide to throw a little ball around in the living room for a while. Me and my babies. It’s a nice way to wake up slowly.
Waking up slow with kids is perfectly delightful.
By 9:30 my single 20-something friend, Rena, showed up with some delicious and oh-sooooooo-moist apple bread which tasted pounds better then my week old, sad and falourn banana bread on the counter. The kids were excited to see her too and eat of course. I was looking forward to some good adult conversation.
Our lives are vastly different. I’m glad for my Rena friend. Instead of being jealous of each other, we appreciate our differences. Because you know, it doestn’t take much for fear to take root; tuff old weeds that get in the way of life and beauty and fruit already there.
Maybe you’re wondering if it’s awkward? I know some of you SAHM’s struggle to have friends from this stage of life.
So, to be honest, yes, it’s awkward sometimes. Conversation lulls can seem deafening or my kids antics unnervingly shrill or I cringe in embarrassment as I spy a 10 inch snot swipe screaming at me as it runs south down the cushion back next to my guest.
True story. It was right where she sat propped on the couch with her shoulder dug deep into the cushion.
Suddenly I’m tongue tied debating whether or not to mention the streak. If I’m silent, maybe she’ll never notice. If I point it out I’ll die a thousand painful deaths and wish I was burried 10 feet under.
What would you have done?!
We both giggled as I changed several shades of pink and then deep, hot, red.
When I feel like I’m talking about my kids too much I catch myself. I don’t want to bother her with too many toddler details or blabber on about a mother’s rainbow of emotions. I’m sure she doesn’t mind a few snippets because, hey, it’s my life after all. And, it would be strange to not talk about my kids at. all.
I want our friendship to be about me AND HER.
I ask about her college classes, her working experience and her home life. There is so much learning, struggle, opportunity, and an inescapable mysterious fog lumming in the distance. Lots of what if’s and possibility. Lots of dreams. Potential. Life. I’m glad to create space for her to breath other air for a while at my house. To get away. Get attention and interest. Get loved on.
Married with kids I find her single, unbound life fascinating and attractive with a wide variety of perspective for me to glean from.
When she left I couldn’t help but bite my lip grinning to myself, “stay-at-home-mom’s have perks like single girlfriends coming over and chatting about life in the middle of the week. If I worked away, I couldn’t do this. My life is so much richer with her story in it”
Later on I got to thinking some more, “I wonder if my life looks appealing to her? And if so, what parts?”
Because clearly, I forget.
Even though I happened to get married later at age 27, I did deal with the struggle of singleness, longings to be married and wondering where my future was headed. But, too quickly my little world changed after two little words “I do” and then “let’s try” and before you know it I’m ushered first down an aisle in white and second, down a hallway that’s white both leading to different, permanent all consuming stages of life.
Here I am now, married 6 years, two kiddos and my dance floor’s reshaped and reordered. I’m completely engrossed in my kids and husband. To connect with Rena takes intention to pause and a few rusty back-steps to those days prior.
So I asked her how my life looks to her.
And from her view here’s what she said,
“From my perspective, I think it’s awesome that you have a clear purpose – being a mother and a wife. Being a single girl and still in college, I have so many unanswered questions and ideas about what I want to achieve with my life, but no certainty that anything will happen or if my dreams are futile.
I guess I crave the stability I imagine you have? At the end of the day you have two children who adore you (they aren’t teenagers yet hehe) and a husband who specifically chose you and loves you. You have a niche that you fit into SO well as a stylish, creative SAHM. I look up to you as a woman who has *achieved their calling*. You are impacting little people and being creative – two things I want to do in my own life.”
Now, we SAHM’m know that we still long for clear purpose most days. But I’m not gonna talk about that.
What I do want to point out is that sometimes as a SAHM we think all our influencing is only unto our little ones whom we stay home with. But the truth is we are really influencing those around us wherever we are. Even those we might not talk to because they make us nervous. If single 20 somethings who have careers intimidate you consider how you might intimidate them. You, mom, with your comfy, relaxing, spontaneous life at home.
Without even talking to people they see you and assume observations about you. That single lady down the street, the gaggle of girls at church in heels with the hair or that same bright smile you see often at the deli you frequent. The lady you assume thinks you are irrelevant, too stressed and/or boring might be seeing something way more beautiful than you ever imagined.
You should talk to her.
- If you’d like to get to know Rena follow her on Instagram at happyshortcake
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If you’d like to contact me personally with thoughts, suggestions or ideas, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org