Parenting is also really, really fun! These little girls are my pride and joy and I love them and their amazing daddy more than words can ever express.
Wow. Did I need that today, or what? I am always so excited to pick up Avery and Kinsley from their preschool and to hear all about their time, but today's excitement ended quickly when Avery, my 4.5 year old, copped the worst attitude I've ever seen. Here's the story:
When she came up to me at the pick up line in the atrium, she asked if we could stay and wait for her friend's class to come through because she wanted to play with her friend. I said yes. Her friend arrived and all three of my girls were so excited! They love running around and playing with this particular girlfriend of theirs. Avery came up to me and tried to hand me her lunch box and I told her she had to hold it (because CLEARLY, my hands and arms were already full from holding Lilly, Kinsley's bag and lunch and my car keys). Avery will be 4.5 years old on Saturday- she can carry her own things, especially when my hands are too full!!!! Well..... my telling her "no" when she tried to hand me her lunch box set her off something awful. She pitched a little fit and I told her that we now had to go and she had to tell her friend good-bye. Do you think she sweetly said "bye" to her friend and calmly walked out the door? Absolutely not. She threw her lunch box on the floor and proceeded to kick it all while crying and yelling at me that she wanted me to hold it and she did not want to leave because she wanted to play with her friends. She escalated from there.
I tell you that part of the story because it happened in the church atrium during pick up time with a good 10-15 moms standing there witnessing her reaction... and mine. Talk about embarrassing. I know I shouldn't be thinking about myself in that situation. That I should be concerned about my child's behavior and the heart of the matter, which I was, but I was also totally embarrassed. There. That reason right there is why I so desperately needed to read this blog post today. I need to be authentic. I'm not perfect, my kids aren't perfect. We have some really, really great times, but we also have moments like that mentioned above. It's not fair to other moms for me to only allow them to see the sweet, kind, obedient moments. Someone today probably needed to see my, usually, well- behaved child act that way because it would encourage that parent that they are not alone. It was tough for me. Trying to swallow that HUGE pill of embarrassment. We walked to car huffing and puffing and escalated more there. There were tears shed from both Avery and myself. It was a rough moment. One that I would prefer to never have to live through again.
Authenticity. It's so hard. It's real. I am thankful for women who open their hearts to me, someone they may have never met, on their blogs as an encouragement to me on my best days and my worst.
So, I will try to be more real and authentic. Please help me by praying for me to get past my own fears of what others will think of me.
No one ever tells you that being a mom is tough. Most people, myself included, only let people see the sweet moments, whether it is through the happy pictures/videos posted on social media, or the public moments when you are trying so hard to sweetly redirect when your child disobeys in front of others. I am totally guilty of that. In fact, just the other day Avery and Kinsley were arguing in front of their friend and her mom. There was hitting and screaming involved and the other mom looked at me and said "I'm so glad to see that". "Your kids always seem so good and you always seem to have it all together". HA! Let me be the first to tell you that I DO NOT have it all together. I spend many days in tears and lots more in absolute frustration over, what I feel to be constant, disobedience and whininess (is that a word?) from my children. Yes, we have some really great days where we all get along great, but there are more days where we seem to battle each other all day long. I question where I went wrong. How do I change it? Chris tries so hard to remind me that they are just young children/toddlers and they are innate sinners, but it doesn't help me much. Do I expect too much out of them? Probably. I mean, they are only 1, 2 and 4, after all.
Being a mom is my dream. I am living my dream. For that, I am beyond grateful. Yes, it's the hardest thing I have ever done in my life. The days that we all get along and the girls are my sweet little angels.... those are the days that help me power through the difficult ones. God has given me this time in my life to be a mother. To teach our girls about His love for them. I fail daily. However, my God is a God of forgiveness and strength. He helps me through the difficult moments. He also rejoices with me in the good times.
For those reading this and feel like you're all alone in this journey of motherhood. You are not! I am going through the same struggles you are.... and most importantly, GOD is walking alongside of you and ready to help you as soon as you are willing to hand the control over to Him. It's my biggest struggle- releasing my control. I don't always do it, but when I do, it's a beautiful thing.
Hang in there, mom. It's a difficult journey, but God has called YOU to go on this journey called Motherhood. Learn from it. Enjoy it. Encourage other moms. I need the encouragement and you do, too. We've got this!
Thank you, God, for allowing me to go through the ups and downs of motherhood. Help you to rely on you daily.