I like to consider myself to be a pretty awesome mom. I wouldn't be too impressed, though. I also consider staying up really late and whiling away hours at a time with my kids while we play Pocket Frogs on our iPods/Phones to be a worthwhile activity. I am, shall we say, a bit eccentric in my parenting style. Well, lets just get it out there...I'm eccentric in most areas of my life. I've come to terms with my quirkiness and unconventionality. My kids, being innocently unaware of anything to the contrary think I'm a great mom just the way I am. I admit that their opinion is the one that ultimately matters the most to me. Honestly, that unconditional love from my kids is like the fuel in my engine. Really keeps me going, especially on the days when I don't feel much like 'going' if you know what I mean.
This summer has most definitely been lazy, a bit hazy and completely crazy at times. I've had a lot to deal with. Recovering from surgery, various bizarre setbacks and a MRSA Staph infection that really wiped out what few reserves I had begun to build up. I am on the mend and doing much better but after emerging from the cave that is my bedroom and squinting painfully into the light that is my household responsibilities, I felt akin to a vampire (no, I don't believe in vampires but like the metaphor) emerging into sunlight for the first time. "Aaaaiiiiieeeeggghhhh!!" Is sort of the sound that the little voice in my head makes as I survey my little kingdom and see it in ruins all around me. I've wanted to fold my proverbial cape over my eyes and retreat into the safety and darkness of my cave on more than one occasion. Actually, in the interest of truthfulness, on more than one occasion, I've done just that.
Daily, I hear that little voice in my head saying things like "Seriously...get your act together. Have you seen the pantry? You used to keep everything organized by color and alphabetized, for Pete's sake!" Or "Hey, how about you make up your bed for the first time since MAY? Whadda ya think?" And "You stay home all day with your kids. Other women have full time jobs and still find a way to keep up with everything and keep orderly, pristine homes. They are out there having it all. Marriage, career, kids, household...I mean, what exactly do you DO?" You get the drift...
After listening to this dialogue for a couple of minutes, I usually tell the little voice to bite me and just zip it. Lucky for me, like a stubborn strain of bacteria, I have become increasingly immune to the negative little voice inside my head and am resistant to take it all that seriously. The loving, positive little voice is getting much more air time these days. Denial? Maybe. Whatever works, right? Here's the thing...I do feel guilty at times. I wish I could do more. Wish I were more motivated or that I had my usual mommy-mojo back. Sometimes I feel like a failure. I pray for strength and wisdom. And then I guess I snap out of it and realize that I'm really doing the best that I can with the cards I've been dealt. Grace washes over me and I just let it go. I see things more clearly and realize that my kids don't give a rat's rump about an unorganized pantry or unmade bed or having a pristine home. They just want me to put on my jammies and play computer games with them. They want my time and attention. My husband wants me to rest and get my strength back as the doctor has ordered. He doesn't care that his kingdom is a little messy. He just wants his queen back. The only one who's been putting pressure on me is, well...me. I'm working on that but old habits die hard, you know? Say a little prayer for me, will you?
Thankfully, there's a vacation to Colorado on my horizon. I really need a change of scenery. Getting ready for a trip is a lot of work but I'm really motivated to get the heck out of my cave for a while. I'm 'going to grandma's' and I know we will all be spoiled rotten and nurtured like crazy. I've gotta tell you...I'm going to eat it up like candy.
Yes, there are superwomen out there 'Doing it All' and 'Having it All.' I will always admire them wistfully from afar. But honestly? They can have it all. I really don't want it. I'll just be on the sidelines in my jammies silently cheering them on and happily munching popcorn as my kids and I advance to the highest levels to be attained on Pocket Frogs.
After all, summer will be over soon enough and the realities of life will take over. The memories, though...we'll have those for a lifetime. Ribbit, ribbit... :o)