So to celebrate this day to honor the mamas of the planet, I wanted to include a few things I've learned over the years since I started momming...
- Being a mother is the most challenging and rewarding job I've ever worked in my life. It's worth every penny I never made and more. I wouldn't trade the experience I've gained or the losing moments I regret (even when I realize I can't go back in time and change my response to them). Even those moments that seem like a loss, really were only more experience gained.
- While I have cherished every beautiful bouquet of flowers delivered or brought to me by my husband (keep 'em coming, C!), I think many of the most memorable arrangements I've gotten over the years have consisted of dandelions or wildflowers from our backyard garden, plucked from the ground (roots and all!) and brought to me by smallish, very dirty hands.
- Being a mother has been the most spiritually growing experience in my life, by far. In a small way, it has helped me understand God more in His love and passion for me -- no matter how I mess up, He'll always welcome me back with open arms. I figured that out by realizing my own ability to love our children through some of their most rebellious moments.
- For a long time, I wished that other people could really know our children the way I do. All their funny quirks, their frustrating habits, their sweet sides, etc. But more recently, I realized that if more people truly understood what I know about each of our kids, I'd lose one of the perks of being their mama. This is a relationship only God Himself and one woman can have with them ... and even though I can share some of their stories in photographs or in words, no one on this earth will know them as the children they are more than I will (or even as much!). Their daddy comes the closest ... but I think that my daily proximity to them probably still gives me the edge and I believe it's by God's design that it's this way in our family.
- The funny thing about Mother's Day I've learned over the years is that without kids, I would not get to celebrate or be celebrated on this holiday each year; however, it's the kids that can sometimes make Mother's Day an almost comedic disaster! If you've never watched ABC's The Middle, I feel sorry for you. But also, if you decide to check it out sometime, I hope you get to watch their Mother's Day episodes (2010 and 2011) because these particularly are so relatable. And since my husband watches the show with me, it's really upped his game on Mother's Day the past couple years to help make the day more successful and fun. Having a show like that to share with him, though, makes it all worthwhile -- especially when I can reference it and he knows exactly what I'm talking about. Inside jokes makes the world (of marriage) go round.
Finally, I'll end this post with an interesting conversation I had with our oldest son yesterday. After telling him several days in a row to please clean out under his bed, I went to greet him in the morning and noticed first thing that he had yet to really get under there and clean things out. The conversation went like this:
"Good morning ... oh ... you still have all that stuff under your bed?"
"I don't have a sandwich under my bed!"
"I didn't say sandwich, I said stuff."
"Well, there's not a sandwich under there."
At that point I just walked away. I still don't know if he cleaned things out from under his bed. Ironically though, just the day before that, I'd discovered half a hamburger, sitting on a bookshelf in our youngest son's room. It was petrified it had been there so long. So as long as H didn't have a sandwich in all that stuff under his bed, I think he was still probably ahead in the "which boy has a cleaner room" game.
Small joys are what motherhood thrives on, right?
---*trying, taxing, tiring and testing ... not to mention emotionally and creatively draining