Sunday, October 26, 2008

The Mommy Diaries, ch.2

So, I finished Chapter 2 of The Mommy Diaries, reading short stories on Growth. I am really looking forward to hearing what you all have to say on these subjects as well.

1. When was the last time you tried something new? I was looking forward to our MOPS meeting couple days ago, I have never done self defense, and we were going to be having a demo by a black belt in Tae Kwon Do. That would've been new. Eric made stuffed acorn squash last weekend, which I'd never had before. It was squash baked and stuffed with meat stuffing: hamburger celery onions, and of course, cheese. It was not too bad. Eric bought me this decaf chai tea, Numi Ruby Chai. I made a pot of it on Wednesday last week.I was intrigued the box read, "Entice fresh water to a boil and pour over a bag of Ruby Chai. Steep 4-6 minutes. Sip and revel in this herbal's warm and spicy rendezvous. This teasan is strong enough to handle milk, yet mild enough to be served alone." I've not had any luck "enticing" water to a boil, but I was intrigued enough to try it straight up, usually I drink my chai half and half with milk and then a packet of splenda. Well, it was so good that I drank the whole pot straight up, by myself. AND then Chris got in on the action the next day when I made another pot, he actually drank a few ounces of tea himself.

2. Are there parts of your pre-children life you left by the wayside when you became a mom? How could you incorporate any of them into your life now in a way that enriches your growth? I didn't realize how much I missed participating in a regular bible study. Most of the ones available are in the evenings, and that is just not my (or Christopher's) best time. The one Eric has us in on Monday nights right now, is really interesting, we're taking apart the Apostle's Creed, but I'm always so tired before, during and after. I was blessed to serve on a Via de Cristo, women's retreat weekend this spring, and a couple of the ladies on that trip decided we'd start trying to meet during their lunchbreaks downtown. We did well, at first, meeting weekly through the spring, but summer threw us off our schedule and we ended up going bi-monthly. Now fall is in full swing, and everyone's schedule has changed, we are finding it hard to meet again. I enjoyed meeting during lunch, having a group that I could take Chris along with, and that he could be entertained by eating, or seeing people pass by, while we sat and had lunch and a bible study. It worked well, but we haven't met in over a month, and I miss it. I'm not sure what step to take now.

3. Is there an area in your life where you feel pulled to make a change? What would that look like, and what practical steps can you take right now to begin to make it happen? See above. I miss having our regular weekly bible studies. Motivated by this question, this morning at church, I approached one of my groupies and asked what's up? However, after some meeting time discussion, I see the problem begins with me. I need to be more flexible, maybe more willing to sacrifice my own personal naptime or evenings. As for what it would look like, I'm afraid to be more of an emotional monster than I already am now. But I can look into the possiblities, and talk to the others in the group.

4. Is there a mistake in your past which you've been covered in guilt over? How could you begin to let it go in order to move on and become the woman God's created you to be? Ummm, yes. Of course there was the time when I lied and told my father my sister ate the reese's peanut butter cups. She kept denying it, and since she had the history of being a notorious lier, he believed me. The more she denied it, the harder and longer her spanking. By the time I could take it no longer, and I confessed, my Dad's arm was tired, and I didn't get nearly the spanking I deserved. Then again, I had been crying my eyes out as I heard her cries. I've apologized, multiple times, but it's still a very sore moment for both of us. I'd love to be able to let that go.
In another more serious story, something else has been lying heavy on my heart lately. A member of my family hurt me emotionally many times when I was younger. The last time I saw this person, they were starting in on Christopher. I had no tolerance for that, and vowed they would never see us again. I've been trying to work on forgiving this person, but I find it difficult since I still have no desire to see this person again. I Really don't want to. But I don't think I've exactly moved on, since a. my family likes to guilt trip me about it, and b. the situation still bothers me and lies heavy in my heart. Chris is oblivious because he's so surrounded by people that love him, that he doesn't notice that someone isn't around who doesn't. I kind of like keeping it that way. On the other hand, shouldn't I offer the opportunity to love him, us? Chris is such a gift, it just boggles my mind that a person in his family wouldn't want to take every opportunity to spend time with him and love him, no matter how far away they live. But this person has demonstrated no change, nor the desire to change, and I really am disinclined to "drive into the Lion's den." I asked Pastor about it, and the only bit of advice I really came away with was, "You can't control where the birds fly, but you can stop them from making a nest in your hair." That was funny, because it seems I'll get bird poo in my hair regardless. But perhaps it might be best to re-establish contact, that may lead to a better ability for me to forgive, but perhaps, not so extensively as to allow us to get shat on. Pastor mentioned in a different sermon a while ago, that we're taking for granted, almost thumbing our nose in the direction of God's gift of Forgiveness to us, if we can't in turn forgive others. I sent an email, that was my Step 1.

5. Think about the growth you've already undergone in the midst of your mothering. Take some time to catalogue how it's made you the fuller, more amazing woman you are today. I didn't think it was possible for the heart to survive outside the human body, but it does. My heart is in my child. Since his birth, my heart has grown to encompass woman and children I don't even know. I pass someone in the grocery store having a little trouble with their toddler, and I leap in to give a hand, or grab a whiley one, tell a stray child not to run with that in their mouth. Or most especially cry and pray for a family of strangers when I hear their story, like that surgery prior to Christopher's last week that had run 3 hours over. That must've been extensive to run a whole 3 hours over, that's a lot of surgery on a child. I think of that family. Before Chris, I would've been inconvenienced, pissy even, by having to wait so long. But every time they came back to tell us we had longer to wait, though I felt bad Chris could still have nothing to drink, (and I did ask if we could just give him some juice) but I felt worse for them, I had to pray for that child, and that family. I still think of them, think of the teensy tiny NICU baby that was leaving the recovery area as we entered with the Mom crying behind it, wondering if that was the family, wondering if they'd had terrible news. I never would've had such sympathy and empathy before becoming a parent myself. And I find myself able to do things I never would've done before becoming a mother. Literally. Changing diapers, sure, and all the medical procedures we've done on Chris that I never thought I'd do again once I left the nursing industry. I do them eagerly, willingly, to make him healthy. I will try to find something to catch his puke. I will pull him closer or pat his head to comfort him when he's covered in it, instead of doing instinct and throwing him down and running to puke myself. Although today, we both lost it for the first time in a month, so we did a combination of the two. I actuallly enjoy making a fool of myself in order to get him to laugh. His laugh is the best music, best medicine, best sound ever in the world. But I just didn't know I'd love him so much.


Anonymous said...

I thought it HILARIOUS that the famous peanut-butter-cup-incident-of-'83 was at the top of your list! :) Not a sore point, no, but better a cautionary tale to others that honesty IS the best policy, even if it takes tremendous courage to be truly honest (which you were, about 20 spankings too late, but terribly courageous nonetheless :) As for the other, you get no guilt from me - I only second-hand you some information you might not otherwise have received, and the choice is yours to do with what you will (God gave us free will in addition to forgiveness, you know, so while both God's gifts are important, it's none of my nevermind and you will not be judged by me whichever way you go with it). And that's all I have to say about that.
And if you want some guilt (sorry to air some dirty laundry here on the public forum), but I've always felt really bad about that time you went to your orchestra concert thingie with your skirt tucked into the back of your pantyhose - I SAW that it was tucked in there and your butt was sorta hangin' out when you walked in after we dropped you off, and I COULD'VE rolled down the car window to yell to you that it was tucked in there before you walked into the school building showing your butt to god and country, but I didn't tell you, and I'm sorry.