Motherhood is FULL of Sacrifice. I’m not sure I understood how completely true this was. Even before the nausea sets in, you sacrifice your extra latte, your wine with dinner, your sugar cravings. With every sick moment in those wee hours of the morning, you sacrifice your pride, and sometimes your will to live. I know that kind of sacrifice, every mom does. But as that baby grows, and we start seeing (literally) the fruits of that sacrifice, it suddenly doesn’t feel quite so sacrificial. With every heartbeat we hear, the bites of broccoli/spinach/kale get less difficult to eat. With each kick, the morning coffee seems less necessary. We were made for self sacrifice. I’m certain that is why it takes so long for babies to grow. Because we have to figure out how to give it all away.
Once those little creature enter the world in their screaming, wiggling, snuggling, miraculous ways, they take even more of us with them. They take our memory, our will to shower, our sleep, and a million other things that used to be important. As toddlers they take our patience, our time, our grocery shopping experience and our previous life and they mush it between their beautifully chubby little hands and then toss it on the floor like last night’s vegetables.
I have lived and loved every waking and sleeping moment of my kids’ lives. Some of it I’ve done kicking and screaming, some of it I’ve done with patience. Rarely have I done it with grace, and mostly I have done it with a whole pile of I have no clue! As my 3rd and last baby approaches age 3, and I send my big kids off to school each day, for the whole day, I am slowly reconciling myself to who I once was.
Thankfully, I’m not that anymore, or at least not all of that. I’ve grown in my understanding of myself, and what gives me life, and what is important and what isn’t. I am learning that complete sacrifice of self, which seems like (and maybe is) the only option when the little people are at their littlest, is exhausting, and miserable when done for a decade. I am at the crossroads my friends. I sit at that place where I decide who I am. What I am called to be next is just around the corner. I am and will always be a mother. But I’m not just a mommy.
A few years ago Coke Zero had a commercial. In the kid/teen/adult always asked “and” and it always got him something more! See it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=srHDgimlgTQ I suppose I am hunting the “and”. Don’t think that I don’t love my mommy hood every minute of the day, because believe me, I LOVE BEING A MOM! I was created to be a mom, I knew that being a mom was my thing for as long as I can remember. But someday soon the work of being a mom will take less and less of my time and my energy. But certainly, in this beautiful world of homework, and bedtimes stories, there is an “and” or 3 waiting in the wings.
Here are a few of mine:
- I am a mom and I am CRAZY passionate about strength of character. I cheer the hard working underdog EVERY SINGLE TIME. I not only watched baseball this summer, I bought t-shirts, watched every game and was justifiably heartbroken when my sweet underdog team lost in game 7 of the world series.
- I am a mom and I absolutely love watching people fulfill their dreams. My husband laughs at my endless love for awards shows, The Voice, Miss America, and yes even the election. Not necessarily because I enjoy politics, though I see the value. I don’t even particularly love awards shows, but I do LOVE watching people who have worked hard, realize their dreams.
- I am a mom and I think community is our most valuable human asset. To me, we are all family in one way or another. We have an obligation to our human family to care for ourselves and our world.
- I am a mom and I have little compassion for weakness, my own or others, but especially my own.
- I am a mom and I believe we have a lot to learn from those around us. I love to share my story with other but more I love to hear other people’s story.
- I am a mom and a blogger and a wife and a friend. I wish to support each of these roles with equal fervor and appropriate time.