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Thursday, June 13, 2013

Not Feeling Like an Amazing Momma? Advice from a Second-hand Mother

“I could have been an amazing mother if I could have just parented our kids a week at a time,” I said, confessing to my husband.

“You are an amazing mother,” he said—always the encourager.

“Well maybe so, but I just had the best week with the girls. We baked, did crafts, read stories, I didn’t even need to worry about dinner. If I didn’t have to worry about cleaning this house and cooking, I’d be the most amazing mother!”

Can you relate?

It’s the stuff we have to do in life that gets in the way of our amazing. I know this, because, you see, I’m a mother parenting for the second time around.

My four kids were nearly grown, launched, out-a-here, when God brought three little sisters to my door step. We started keeping them a week at a time. A momma for a week. It worked.

I had time to plan. I knew when they were coming. The dates scratched on my calendar months in advance. Craft ideas planned and purchased. Check. Meal ideas, planned and groceries purchased. Check. Check. A thorough cleaning before they arrived. CHECK. I was ready. My ducks were in a row. And, perhaps more honestly, I knew there was an end. I could shop and clean next week. It was time to play and do mother stuff. The fun stuff.
Image courtesy of Stewart Miles/ 

 And I was AMAZING! And I felt AMAZING!

Then came a summer.

Then the summer ended.

And then . . . the point of no return. Literally.

They came. They stayed. Oh, and yes, they conquered.

I could barely breathe. So much to plan. No time to plan.  So much to consider. No time to consider. It was no longer camp at Aunt Carolyn’s. It. Was. Life.

“Sorry kiddo, I can’t help you with that puzzle, I’ve got to go make a grocery list.”

“Stop what you’re doin.’ Everybody in the mini-van, NOW! We’re outa milk.”

“Sorry Squirt, I can’t read right now, the cat just used the mound of dirty laundry for his litter box.”

You would think because I’d already parented before, it would have been easier. I’m a second-hand mother for crying out loud. Ha! So much for thinking.

Oh, if motherhood, well . . . could just be motherhood. If we didn’t have to be a maid, a teacher, a personal administrator, the cook, the house keeper, the taxi driver, the recreation director, the “If you don’t get this right, you’re going to screw up the lives of three otherwise healthy human beings” director. Yeah. Did I miss anything? (Please feel to comment below.)

I don’t know about you, but sometimes, I’d just like to parent a week at a time. So then I can feel amazing.

But somehow I think it’s in the feelings where I can lose perspective with AMAZING.

My kids do need clean underwear, whether doing laundry makes me feel amazing or not.

My kids do need meals, whether grocery shopping or making dinner makes me feel amazing or not.

My kids do need a semi-organized home, whether cleaning up makes me feel amazing or not.

Yes, I think we can be amazing mothers, whether we feel that way or not.

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