Thursday, July 14, 2011

Survival mode

Today I was thinking about our week so far. We got off to a bit of a rocky start - nothing major, really, it was just me as Mommy needing to get my patience in check. Addie and I have had a good few days and I've even been able to take a few moments to just watch her and appreciate much.

I feel like so often I live life in survival mode. Doing one thing to get to the next, to the next, to the next. Washing dishes to dirty more dishes with more meals to clean more dishes. Doing laundry to fold it to put it away to wear it, to wash it. Running errands to get things done to check things off The List only to add more things to The List. Picking up toys (a few times a day - Addie helps, too) to get them back out to teach to put them away to scatter them from room to room to put them away...again.

I tend to live life full speed ahead. I walk fast. I jump from point A to Z often when dealing with big life situations without first looking at what's in between. I try to anticipate things that are going to happen and plan accordingly, sometimes at the expense of not concentrating on what's at hand. Sometimes I interrupt people and that bothers me after the fact.

When Addie was smaller and she'd be fussy and I'd be frustrated with her fussiness I would often realize she was trying to get my attention because in my flurry of frenzy I hadn't taken time to just sit and play with her. As soon as I realized it the mom guilt washed over me and I took note that if I just spent some time with her she'd likely be okay. Now, before you think I am neglectful mom (see that anticipating what you're thinking?!), we played a lot, but this was those times when I just couldn't figure out what the deal was. As she has gotten older it seems she is more likely to entertain herself, but that doesn't mean I'm off the hook - it means I need to be even more intentional about her and her needs.

Feeding, clothing, bathing, putting to bed - those things are easy and those things are part of living in survival mode. Playing, teaching, training, relaxing, having fun - that's the something more.

I'm trying to learn to concentrate on the something more. It's hard, but it's worth it. Something about smelling the roses. Rather, my tendency is to notice the roses and comment on them as I breeze by, marking those things off The List.

All I can do is make more of an effort and pray that God strengthens the desire in my heart. There won't be more than 24 hours in the day, the meals still need to be cooked, dishes washed, clothes dried, folded and put away. But, it's everything in between all of that to which I am referring. While we have plenty of fun as a family, going on outings and making fun for ourselves, it's the moments of eating the plastic peanut butter and tomato sandwich sweetly made for me, watching as little hands put together the same puzzle three or four times in a row, or really looking every time she says, "Wook! Wook, Mommy, wook!"

I am so thankful to be a mom.


elise said...

girl. i am so there. just trying to survive!
thanks for the encouragement and reminder to be present :O)

Melissa said...

Thanks, Elise. Your comments are encouraging to me!