23 January 2007

It's not easy being in charge

Life is full of some pretty harsh realities. Realities that require us to come out waving our white flag - sometimes in desperation, sometimes in humility, sometimes against our will. I've learned to surrender to a lot of things in my short existence as a mom. I've made the practical decisions that I know will bring me joy in the long run, but don't always make me happy right now. There is a time and a season for all things. I chose and was chosen to be this right now and just like any other challenge I've encountered in my life, I want to do it well and with a happy heart.

That doesn't mean I don't want to whine once in a while. My kids have been sick and sick again. And I've been sick. And I am sick of sickly people! I swear if my husband gets this...

Anyway, they say that unless Mama's happy, nobody's happy. Mothers set the tone. But there are bound to be days when we don't want to put on a happy face for everyone else's sake. We just want to be what we are that day - tired or indifferent or frustrated or emotional or whatever. But we don't want to lose control either. So we trudge along and wonder where our compensation is. The truth is there are few moments of uplift in our lives that don't come as a result of sacrifice. We may simply have to go through the motions some days, but it will catch up with us, refill our determination and commitment and help us catch up with joy again.

There is so much pressure when you're the one in charge. Everything seems to fall back on you, not all of it good. And when you're doing the best you possibly can that gets frustrating. It seems that the times we most need to have mellow, there is chaos. The times we most need to have quiet, there is noise. The times we most need to have calm, there is contention. The refiner's fire entered again and again and again... "Is there a curse on my house?!" comes the cry.

My time for me will return. A time when surrendering will come to an end and my children will go out and be their own amazing individuals. And then irony will rare her head, and I will miss caring for my sick children. I will miss putting together the train set over and over. I will miss answering the same questions time and time again. I will miss the cute little pouts and the obsession with tugging on my hair. I will miss handprints on my windows. I won't miss laundry! But there are a lot of things, difficult things, that I have and will continue to surrender to, only to turn around one day and think, "That was one of the most challenging times, but the most enlightening time and the sweetest time of my life."

8 comments:

QueenMeadow said...

"That was one of the most challenging times, but the most enlightening time and the sweetest time of my life."

I think that sums up motherhood to a "T"

((hugs))

Char said...

I remember in my early days of motherhood (LOL!) when the realization hit me that I could a) be miserable missing my old life or b) surrender to my new life and find joy in new places. What a difference that made!

We're sick too! (((HUGS)))

Morning Glory said...

This should be required reading for all young mothers. You have developed the most amazing insight and I look forward to my mouse click when I see you've posted something new. This was wonderful, Lei.

Whining now and then is necessary!

Tracey said...

Yes. Oh yes. I wish we could break motherhood up sometimes... Space the babyhood/childhood/teenager/adult child times up, so that we would never get tired of one phase. So that we wouldn't fall into the daily routines that make time fly by so freakin fast!

An Ordinary Mom said...

I try to mother "with a happy heart," but sometimes I whine, too ... okay, so I might whine a lot. And sometimes I don't like being "the one in charge" because I don't always model the best behavior. But every day I am working on it, and even though that refiner's fire might burn awfully hot some days, I wouldn't trade it for anything. The sweet I love yous, the slobbery wet kisses and the tender embraces all make it worth it.

Good luck with all the sicknesses ... I swear someone has had something or other in our house since last July! I have almost been tempted to order a white blood cell count on my son!

Rachelle said...

What a beautiful post. It truly touched me!

Kristi said...

Very, very sweet! And I needed that today. Thank you!

utmommy said...

That was a great post. It's true that as a mother we have to sacrifice so much. But, in the long run, when those days are past we will look back and know that it was all worth it.