stronger

I used to think I didn’t want children. The world was too messed up, I was too messed up, family dynamics get too messed up. But I fell in love, and something about that love gave me hope that I could be a good mother.

Now I know. Becoming a mother changes your entire perspective of everything in life. There is no love like a mother’s love for her children. This overwhelming depth of feeling has given me a strength that I didn’t know I had. There is a primal fierceness in a mother’s love, and a superhuman strength that is also a mother’s greatest weakness.

I love my husband deeply, but, to be honest, I could go on without him. My boys, though… my life would be over.

I would do anything for my sons, anything in my power and beyond, to protect them, to give them the best life possible. Yes, I have no doubt that I would inflict mortal harm with my bare hands if it meant their safety. The other edge of that sword — they ARE my life now, and that vulnerability is terrifying. My life, my existence, my sanity, wholly depends on their well-being.

In a way, my need to protect them is purely self-serving. But I know I can move mountains for them, and I would not have found this strength until I felt the vulnerability of motherhood.

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i love fall… NOT

My day yesterday:

Woke up in my preschooler’s bed. It was still dark. Tried to get more sleep in my own bed, but my 3rd-grader woke up and started talking. He doesn’t stop talking.

Somehow, I got both kids dressed, fed, brushed, lunch packed, in the car, and to school. I don’t remember any of it.

I booked over to a client’s to receive a delivery, style a room, and put up 3 cork boards in a perfectly straight line. Stepped out to pick up some accessories for said client, ate a teeny bag of peanuts, then went back to client’s house for finishing touches. 5 hours of work… phew!

I had planned to go for a run at this point, but went to Target instead. Training for my upcoming 5k is important, but the possibility of no toilet paper in the house is terrifying.

Made it home with toilet paper — 12-pack of Mega Plus rolls. Ate a bowl of cereal and some cheese and crackers. Fantasized briefly about not picking up the kids from school.

Got the kids. Came back home.

Made snack. Made dinner. Hubby comes home — yay!

I went for my run. 2.4 miles, 13 min/mile. I’m working on it.

Jumped in the shower and… day’s not done yet… got dressed for Back To School Night. Yippee.

Drove back to the kids’ school. Schmoozed and made friends with parents and teachers. Commiserated with like-minded mom about wishing we were wearing PJs and drinking beers instead.

Made it home by 9:30pm. Put on PJs. Ate dinner while watching my TV boyfriend Jax Teller kill a lot of dudes, until 11:20pm.

Finally, asleep in my own bed.

This morning, when it was still dark, I woke up in my preschooler’s bed.

me, too.

I Miss the Village by Bunmi Laditan. If only life was still that simple.

And if you haven’t read her blog, The Honest Toddler, DO IT.

goat rodeo days

Any blog post that compares a day with kids to “a huge goat rodeo” is gem. My house has felt like a goat rodeo all summer.

Goat Rodeo days. These involve multiple kids, all mobile and past the napping years, seemingly bent on devising complex plots to undermine your attempts to even start any item on the day’s to-do list.

baby goats are cute

On days like this, I can’t wait to hit the Sweet Spot. When the kids are old enough to entertain themselves. When no one needs me to give them a snack or a juice, or a band-aid, or even a hug.

We’re not there yet. I yell a lot. I have butts to wipe. I hear mamamamamamamamama ALL. DAY. LONG. And sleeping through the night means I fell asleep putting the boys to bed and decided not to bother getting into my own bed.

But all these things that drive me bananas mean that they need me. And someday they won’t.

RANTS FROM MOMMYLAND: The Sweet Spot.

“mom-petition” is all in your head

I realize it’s been forever and a day, but there is so much truth in this post from Glennon Melton at Momastery that I had to share:

Glennon Melton: Quit Pointing Your Avocado At Me.

new normal

My thoughts are all over the place after this week of utter insanity.

I think about the 7 Boston Marathons I’ve watched from the Crate and Barrel store on Boylston Street, where this year the windows were blown out by the blast a few buildings away. The attack happened at the time when the majority of runners were approaching the finish. Not the elite runners, but the everyday folks who run for personal reasons, in pursuit of a goal they may have never achieved before. These are our mothers, brothers, fathers, sisters, cousins, coworkers, neighbors, teachers, and friends. Unlike 9/11, there was no political or economic significance to the time or place. The marathon attack was at a community event, on runners and spectators just like you and me, and the only motive was to create fear, pain, and extreme suffering for this entire city and nation.

I think about this new reality we live in, and are raising our children in, where we are constantly aware of the possibility of an attack by evil people. Evil people aren’t just leaders of other countries with nuclear weapons, they are not just targeting people with money and power. Evil people are hurting our children, and it breaks my heart to think of how many children have been lost all too recently.

I think about what I’ve told my first-grader about this past week. “Some very bad people put bombs in Boston where people were watching the marathon. Yes, it is near where I used to work. Lots of people got hurt, but even more people were helping to rescue them.” And yesterday, “The police want us to stay home today because they are trying to catch the bad man who hurt so many people. It’s okay to be scared, but I will protect you, and we are safe here.”

I say it in a calm, almost matter-of-fact tone so he doesn’t get scared. A tone that tries to makes it seem normal. But I don’t want this to be his normal. I don’t want him to think that bombings and man-hunts and sirens and helicopters flying overhead and lock-downs are normal.

I want him to think that normal is having a picnic at Jamaica Pond, walking to the top of Peter’s Hill with his little brother and dog, meeting up with friends at the playground at Fallon Field, going to school that doesn’t have to close because of a “situation.” This particular situation is over, but, pardon my language, this shit is still fucked up.

I want him to think that normal is watching the runners cross the finish line at the Boston Marathon on Patriots Day. Will we? I don’t know yet.

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the throw-down 3s

For both of my boys, the terrible 2s were a walk in the park. The 3s, on the other hand, look out, mama!

Age 2 is when kids get upset because you don’t know what they want. Age 3 is when they’ve told you exactly what they want, but you won’t give it to them. Ice cream for lunch, wearing shorts in the snow, ice cream for snack, watching another Little Einsteins episode, ice cream for dinner, you get the picture. They’re ready to throw down the gauntlet at any second.

Gotta remember this when my 3-year old gets me riled up….

via repurposed playground: On being 3.