Welcome to June's Use Your Word challenge. This is how it works: participating bloggers submitted four to six words or short phrases for someone else to craft into a post. All words must be used at least once and all the posts will be unique as each writer has received their own set of words. That is the challenge, here is a fun twist; no one who is participating knows who got their words and in what direction the writer will take them. Until now.
My words are: Omega ~ train ~ spectacular ~ river ~ Oreo ~ construction site
I am beginning to notice a common occurrence with these monthly challenges. I often end up posting blogs, that are nothing like what I had originally planned, when I first read my prompt e-mail. This post is no exception to this common occurrence. That is exactly what happened. I read these words, and I immediately tried to figure out if I could write a post about Gigi's fourth birthday (which is quickly approaching). While I was trying to figure that out, I actually thought of a way to fit four of the words into a Stable Layne post, and just knew I could make the others fit. Yet, once I sat down to actually write, neither of those things were on the agenda. All I could think about was motherhood.
Motherhood. That is what is on my mind. Specifically my journey as a mother. It has been a wild ride. I think more wild than I could have ever imagined motherhood being. Though, in fairness to motherhood, I really had no solid clue of what motherhood would be like, when I discovered I was going to be a mom. I think that is mostly due to the fact that I have not had much experience with kids, especially very young kids. Most of my experience has been with slightly older kids. Mostly tweens and teens. I have had some experience with babies, and for that I am grateful. Could you imagine become a mom, and have zero idea how to change diapers or prepare bottles? That would be so difficult. Luckily, I did know the basics.
Despite knowing the basics, I had no real idea about what motherhood is really like. The struggles moms face. The milestones kids go through. The phases kids go through. So, on one hand, I feel like I have done REALLY well. On the other hand, I definitely know I have stumbled, and the critic inside of me, likes to dwell on all the times I have stumbled. I am probably way harder on myself than I should be. I think that is okay though. If I didn't dwell at least a little, I probably wouldn't be so motivated to be a better mom.
I am definitely not the best mom to ever live, but I have not exactly been a spectacular failure either. I have definitely had some success as a mom. I find myself feeling sorry for Gigi though. I guess because I LOVE her so MUCH, and think she is SO amazing, that I feel she deserves the absolute BEST mom EVER, and that isn't me. So, I feel kinda bad she is stuck with me. Not too bad though, because I wouldn't want to have any other kid. I want her. My perfectly imperfectly, amazingly amazing Gigi.
Lately, I feel like I am drowning in the river of motherhood. I am overwhelmed. So, so overwhelmed. To be honest, I think I have been overwhelmed since day one. I remember the day we were bringing her home from the hospital. I remember I had dressed her, and was getting her into her car seat. She was so tiny, at 4 lbs 12 oz, and her car seat swallowed her whole. Chad had gone to pull the car up to pick up zone, and the nurse was going over our discharge paperwork. I was outwardly calm, but internally I was FREAKING OUT. I remember thinking... Are they crazy?! They are sending ME home with this precious baby?! They are trusting me?! Just like that?! I don't know what in this world I am doing.
Yet, they did. They trusted me, and sent me home with the most amazing kid I have ever known. I am glad they did. I still question their sanity. These days, I find myself questioning my own sanity. Mostly because of motherhood. No joke. I think I have gone a little nuts. I guess worrying twenty-four seven for the safety of a little human will do that to you. The sleepless nights. The tantrums. The milestones. The falls. The scrapes. The colds. It all kinda makes you a little bit crazier than you were before.
When I was younger, I had these ideas of what I would be like as a mom. How I would act. What I would do. How my kids would act. What my kids would do. Let me tell you, reality is nothing like the image I had in my head all those years ago. I was seriously clueless. These days, I often find myself doing things I never thought I would. Gigi does things I never thought a kid of mine would do.
I mean, sometimes, I actually will give Gigi the Oreo she wants, despite her not eating her entire dinner, just to keep the peace, and by myself some sanity, and avoid her having a meltdown. When it is almost time for her to go to sleep, and I know she is at that stage of sleepy where she will cry over being denied an Oreo, but she isn't quite ready to go to bed yet, yes, she gets the Oreo. Yes, I get to avoid another meltdown, and yes we both go to bed a little bit happier.
I always envisioned myself as the Alpha, and my kids as the Omega. I would lead. They would follow. My word would be law. Things would be as I wanted them to be. Well, let me tell you.... Gigi is more of a Beta. She is like my right hand gal. She gets her way, more than I would probably want to admit. She successfully changes my mind, more than I ever thought possible. She makes me think. She keeps me on my toes. It is way less black and white, than I knew it would be. There are definitely some gray areas.
My parenting isn't exactly a train wreck. It is more of a construction site. Constantly changing, growing, building, falling down occasionally, in flux, being repaired and altered, and messy. So much mess. Life with kids is way messier than I knew it could be. So much mess. Though, Gigi is getting so great at picking up her toys. I love that. There was a time, not too long ago, I thought I would be picking up toys for the rest of my life. Then, one of those unexpected milestones struck, and she just started picking up after herself. It isn't perfect, but it is nice. Life is still messy though.
I think that is part of the appeal though. I mean, a day will come when my house isn't messy. When everything is exactly where I want it to me. When Gigi's room is empty, and she is out living her own life, starting her own independent journey. When that happens, I know I will think back at the messes of the past, and long for the discarded books on her living room 'bed', and the scattered toys across her bedroom floor. I will remember all the moments where I was overwhelmed, and wish I were still overwhelmed. I will miss her. I will miss this.
So, for now, I will try my hardest to be the best mom I am able to be. I will hug her as often as possible. I will enjoy the kisses. I will constantly think that I am losing my mind. I will give her the Oreo. I will put a band aid on the scrape. I will feel needed. I will love her endlessly. I will cherish it all. The struggles. The successes. The crazy. Motherhood. For now, it all feels like it will be the death of me, but it will be a beautiful death. I am not looking forward to the days, where I feel like the quiet or the distance between our homes, will be the death of me.
I will enjoy this. I will appreciate it. I will survive motherhood.
Don't forget to check out all the other blogs, featuring this month's Use Your Words challenge. Check out what words they received, and how they used them! I hope you all have a fabulous weekend!
Links to the other “Use Your Words” posts: