Friday, May 20, 2016

reflections on this season


lately my thoughts have been circling around what this season of motherhood and my life looks like right now, as i reflect on the meaning of spring (yes, i know, it's basically summer...can we agree that i'm just always going to be late to the party? yes? okay good.). outwardly we are celebrating the arrival of shorts-wearing temperatures, planting our gardens, and approaching our cleaning lists with something akin to joy, but i've been under this realization that i am in a season of spring personally, as well.

i like to think that spring is a time for refreshment and possibility. for hope. it's funny when i compare this spring to last spring. it's really hard for me to look back in a way,  because i think i generally tend to forget the bad stuff...and i've forgotten a lot of last year;). but i do know that this spring, i feel more content.

i was telling a friend of mine recently that the stay at home mom life has ebbs and flows. some weeks are just so hard. and some weeks are so completely lovely. this spring i've been feeling both in balance and out of balance. in balance more with myself and a little out of balance with my motherhood. i think i am in a new season with my kids where they are asking just a bit more than i've been accustomed to give, and so i am feeling that stretch of having to cope with increased demand. it is a season that i am simultaneously cherishing and feeling completely incompetent for. a little like i'm failing. or missing something. missing patience. missing nap time. missing energy. missing inspiration. missing focus. missing my alone time. missing the two extra arms i must have originally been destined to have for these two kids (ha;). and even so, i am still madly in love with my role as a mother.

i am also more in balance with myself. which is to say, i am feeling more at peace with my life. with all that has come before and all that is. learning to accept and let go (at least a little bit) my victimhood, my yearning, my complaints, my unrealized expectations. learning to embrace the life i've been given. experiencing joy in simple things. in God. in my husband. in my children. in just living.

but sometimes it's easy in spring to feel like you are just getting ready for summer. bikini body workouts (or failed attempts at;) and beach-trip planning and restocking your sunscreens. especially the last two weeks it's been a mad dash for making sure we have everything we need for this trip (why is it that trips are always accompanied by a long list of errands you've been putting off?!). i like to think that my master procrastination organizational skills come to the fore in these moments;). and even though all of those things can be kind of fun because it's something tangible to focus on, i actually end up feeling unfocused, distracted, and discontent. somehow i start to think that my life service is making trips to targets and checking things off my to-do list, and sadly, the kids feel my impatience when i am Just Trying To Get All The Things Done!

so, i've been thinking too, about how to slow down. how to live a simpler life. how to live a small life (does that even make sense?).

even though i have a hundred things and goals that i am wanting to accomplish, and even though i have been feeling like i don't have enough hours in the day for it all (or maybe because of that?), i am also desperately wanting to slow down. i'm sure someone else reading this might be like: but do you do anything besides mother?? why do you need to slow down?? and i know right?! what do i DO all day long? i don't know if i necessarily need to slow down outwardly (although, yes, fewer trips to all the stores would be nice). maybe what i am really wanting is to slow down inwardly. settle in. soak in the moments (i know it's all i talk about and i'm sure it looks like that's all that's taking place). this feeling began with the birth of wilder and has just become more and more potent as i look back on two sets of photos and videos and feel like each of my babies was a newborn just days ago, only to be confronted by the real-life mystery of them now walking and talking. but i am not just talking about slowing down so that i can enjoy my kids, although yes, that is surely a motivation. i am talking about slowing down the incessant whirlwind inside. to live more purposefully. with a goal in mind.

and what is my goal?

i think my goal is to be more still. (i'm not talking about being still long enough to read a book for hours, because trust me, i've got that one nailed.;)

to be still in my motherhood, knowing that that is my primary goal and concern.

to be still in my social media interaction, instead of being overwhelmed by all the photos and images and letting them influence my perspective on life.

to be still inwardly and rest in God, no matter what life brings.

for now, i'm off to practice the art of sitting still and reading a book at the beach! ;)

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