Saying Yes…..

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Posted by Gina Perkins, Pre-School Mommie | Posted in Gina Perkins | Posted on 24-01-2011

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“I cry because being a mother is such a privilege.  I cry because I forget that it is a privilege.  I cry because I love my children so.  I cry because I want to love them more.  I cry because I sense in my soul that this love transcends all my understanding.  I cry because I am humbled to be the vessel entrusted with their care.” – Angela Thomas

When I read this quote last week, it really spoke to me.  It perfectly describes how I feel about motherhood (and sort of illustrates how my perpetually imbalanced hormones make me break down and cry all too often).  Mothering is an emotional job that creates an inexplicable bond with a tiny person, and awakens a love so deep within our hearts that we are frequently moved to tears.  Mothering is filled with ups and downs, triumphs and insecurities, joy and confusion, celebrations and fears – but mostly, it’s filled with transformational goodness.

I have been really in love with motherhood lately.  I feel like I have crossed over into the Land of the Content.  I have finally made peace with my job as a stay at home mom, and I have become really proud of the special role that I’ve grown into.  I have learned to appreciate the value of what I’m doing on a daily basis, and I have accepted that no matter what others believe – raising a child is truly the hardest job on earth.  I have stopped worrying about my previous life as an administrative assistant at an incredible company, and how important that I thought I was there. I have even stopped lamenting over the loss of my very own paycheck (though I was tempted to go there today as I was admiring my friend’s new boots).  The point is, I think that my identity crisis is over, and I am pretty cool with the woman who I’ve become over these past 17 months.  Amazingly enough, this peace about my current career choice, along with my acceptance of self, has given me the ability to be a better mom.

On Friday, my husband pitched a spontaneous plan.  He suggested that we take a day trip to Tahoe on Saturday, and introduce DJ to the snow.  I jumped on board with his idea, although, what he didn’t know (until reading this) is that I wasn’t feelin’ it AT ALL.  First of all, I am not a snow person.  Secondly, I don’t really dig road trips.  And finally, I now know that nothing’s truly spontaneous in the life of a mom – so there was a lot to plan within the next 24 hours.  There were snow boots to buy, laundry to do, snacks to pack, and toys to bring.  Ugh – there went my Friday.  Anyhow, I said “Yes.”  Yes to six hours of driving for one hour of play.

My job, as DJ’s mom, is to help create (and preserve) a childhood full of discovery, wonder, and adventure.  My job, I am realizing, is to say “Yes” more often.  I need to say yes to the things outside of my comfort zone if they are ultimately good for DJ (this can mean playing in the snow, or it can mean bearing yet another afternoon at the park with that super annoying nanny who’s always there chasing her poor kid around forcing grapes into his mouth – but I digress).  It’s about saying yes to the things that require more of my own time, for the benefit of creating quality time (memories) with my family.  Heck, sometimes it’s even about saying yes to ice cream for dinner, yes to eating Goldfish crackers in the bath tub, or even yes to finger painting without a smock (now we’re gettin crazy!). It’s just about saying yes more often.  It’s about being a grounded, disciplined, consistent mom who’s also confident enough to do radically spontaneous and fun things now and again.

Just say yes.  Say yes, and feel the tears well up in your eyes as you watch your children squeal with delight.  Whatever excites them, whatever charges them, whatever interests them, whatever makes them laugh, whatever makes them feel important and loved, whatever deepens your connection to them – just say yes.  Excusing yourself from the rules and routines once in a while is so liberating – and that freedom will make you a better mom.  I promise.

I cry because being a mom is so ridiculously cool.  I cry because most people look at me these days and think that I am not cool.  I cry because I yearn for just one more hour to myself.  I cry because I can’t bear to be away from DJ for too long.  I cry because my back hurts after six long hours in the car.  I cry because the pictures of my daughter touching snow for the first time are priceless.