Your Mom...

Somethin' for the Kiddies....

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Being a Mom is Hard Work, huh?

This is a question I have been asked over the past year a few times from Lucy. Maybe when she saw me flailing or I sighed deeply after satisfying the latest request (and maybe 50th one of the day).
But the truth is...things have gotten easier. I was asked by a friend today how the experience of having the two kids close in age was for me. I told him the first year was probably the hardest year of my life. Juggling a 21 month old and a breastfeeding newborn was about as tough as it gets. We were put to the test in many ways. In other ways, it forced me to slow down and get to the basics of life.
The next year, pretty tough. TONS of multi-tasking and even though Lucy was in preschool two mornings a week, I still always felt that internal tugging to "have some alone time" and never being without a child in tow. Chasing an 18 month old and dealing with a crazy, emotional 3 year old. I was always very, very tired.
This year, not so much. I've changed and the kids have changed. Lucy is independent, more mature, self-sufficient, and has toned down much of her drama (as of now, 6 months in...I DO have to agree with the rumor that age 4 is a much calmer year). Tommy is now a talking, running, self-playing, adorable chunk of easiness who is o.k. with me not standing over him 24/7 and happily waves goodbye as he heads into the preschool classroom.
And then I am alone 3 mornings a week...for 2.5 glorious hours. I get my "me time" and my errand time, my running alone outside time, and my "dink around a store while staring aimlessly" time, or maybe my "spending too much money on coffee" time. But that is neither here nor there...moving on...
I have changed in that I am more low key (for all the reasons stated above). I don't have to be so hyper-vigilant. I can actually jump in the shower and no one is stricken or sobbing. I am a multi-tasking fool. Groceries are in the house. I'm still doing pretty well with that cooking healthy and regularly thing. Laundry is done. The house is usually clean. I've got my groove going.
When the kids aren't in school, we have such a blast. Many mornings, as we are cruising around in the car, hanging around on a lazy morning, or just eating a PLG lunch at Olga's together, I often stop and think to myself, "How LUCKY am I to get to do this with my two favorite people in the world?" These kids are hilarious.
In some ways, I feel like a survivor. I have lived through some very stressful times over the past few years. Lately, I have had the thought that nothing would really throw me at this point. I have tackled raising two little people for the past 4 1/2 years. Now THAT is something. I have grown stronger from my experience as their mom. I have learned you can't control everything. That life isn't really perfect and that sometimes things just happen and that's all there is to say.
I've learned to love outside of myself in a way I never really understood. I, of course, love Matt as my husband and best friend. I get the quote about how having a baby is like deciding to give your heart away and let it walk around the earth.
But then...with all that return to normalcy and non-baby life and independence and self-confidence is that feeling in the back of my brain...
They will never be babies again. They are getting bigger and bigger every moment. And it's bitter sweet.
Mostly excited for what they've become, how fun they really are now and wondering what they will become. But maybe just a tiny bit sad my babies are growing up.
And as I tell Luce every time she asks, "It IS hard but I love being your mom more than anything in the world..."


At 2:18 PM, Blogger amanda said...

Great post... I love to hear such positive things about stages to come for us. Although, I have to say, I'm totally loving the baby stage right now. Besides the lack of sleep, that is.

ps. about the last post... we love us some sweater vests around here too ;)

At 7:21 AM, Blogger good joo said...

love the post. the whole "survivor" and low key comments ring true here. god it's hard being a mom. good grief. and yet it can be the most satisfying thing in the world. better than a super clean house!


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I'm a 39 year old stay-at-home mom. I have a 9 year old daughter and a 7 year old son. I have lived in the big city and in the mountains, but am happy to be back in the Midwest, raising the fam. I enjoy laughing, wine, bad karaoke, US Weekly, running, cemetaries, cheese sticks and short hair-dos. In my previous life, I was class-clown and a wanna-be comedian. In my professional life, I'm a journalism major with 10 years of marketing and PR experience. I dream of being a cast member on Saturday Night Live and working at Disney World as Snow White.

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