On Day #9, I was running out of ideas on what to write about, and my cousin, Brian, gave me suggestions. Here's one: What is different about being a wife/mother from what you always envisioned it growing up? What’s better, what’s worse?
Poor Katie, the firstborn, I apologize to her all the time. She's the first time we've done this parenting thing. She has to be the one we "experiment" on, sometimes it turns out well, and sometimes, not so much. Thankfully, she is one forgiving girl!
I want Katie and Mary Margaret to smile all the time. I want them to be happy. I have come to the realization that that expectation is unrealistic and ridiculous. They are not going to be happy all the time, I cannot make them happy all the time, and that is ok. They are not responsible for my happiness, either. I have to keep my expectations in check. I don't always do this, but I know that I need to.
Time flies by. I will admit, I am not one of those moms who wishes the baby days were back. I was so glad when they were old enough to talk to me, tell me what hurt, or why they were crying. I felt like the baby days were such a guessing game. I was so not confident about mothering babies, very unsure about so much of it.
I think the biggest eye opener for me has been how my perspective of my mom has changed. She stayed home with us until I went to Kindergarten and then she went back to work. Some of my fondest memories are of the two of us whenever we would get to go to the mall. We only shopped for needs, back to school and special occasions, so we didn't hang out at the mall all the time. But sometimes, when we got to splurge, we would go to Bob's lemonade and get those chocolate ice cream bars (the ones they dip in chocolate, then roll in peanuts). Those tasted so good! It was during those times (when I was in upper high school) that I remember us having good conversation.
What I also think of now is how tired she must have been, taking me after work. I say that out loud to Katie and Mary Margaret all the time, but I do not remember Mama ever saying how tired she was.
I also see now how unselfish she was, in fact, I would say that she is one of the most unselfish people I know. As we got older, she worked in order to help us get through college. I remember the day I realized that (I was still in college) and I was really taken aback, and I remember thinking then that she was amazing, because I would never do that for my kids. Obviously, I feel differently now. I will do whatever I can to help our girls get through school.
Being a mom is so much more...emotionally involved than I thought it would be. But I sure do love it.