I often try and analyze my life as someone from the outside looking in. It helps me gain perspective and a sense of gratitude for the blessings God has provided. Never would I have thought I'd be a mother of two silly sweet boys. I'mma be honest. I was completely scared of childbirth as a teenager and vowed to never go through it. But I have. Twice. And when your life shifts gears as the journey unfolds, you have to allow your mind to develop a different normal. For the record: there is nothing normal about motherhood.
I don't say this to be disrespectful to my husband or children but growing up, I always had this idea that motherhood was boring. Furthermore, I had the judgmental mindset that anyone who would stay home to raise children instead of having a career was a weirdo. That was basically what I learned from society around the 90's. You know. Besides every dance routine from Britney Spears. Through the years, women became more empowered in the workplace. Which obviously is a great thing. The not-so-great thing is the negativity that was placed on mothers based on outside knowledge of their life. Whether you go to work or stay home (like I actually do now), motherhood is not mundane. Sure, there might be times certain things are repetitious but there is no way I will ever say that motherhood is mundane or boring. At least not in my house! And I'm more than okay with that.
Let me share with you what I've learned in my 5 years as a mother. It is hard. Like punch-in-the-gut-after-eating-cake hard. The kind of hard that makes you look at yourself and every thing you do. EVERY THING. The type of hard that keeps you awake at night, with tearful prayers over and shameful regrets. Motherhood is far from boring when you have screaming contests at 7am. When a toddler pukes for the first time in a crowded restaurant and you look around for help, only to realize it is your responsibility to figure out how to handle it. (I mean, it's your kid.) When you go to reach into the diaper bag and realize there are no more diapers in it. It's literally called a diaper bag! What else can possibly be in there? (Answer: everything. Except enough diapers of course.) Motherhood is that kind of hard.
But motherhood is also the most beautiful gift I've ever been given. The first kiss on my cheek from a little hot face. The first word, step, giggle, painted doodle and unforced hug. When you wake up to the biggest smiles that you helped create. Actually being able to teach something you know to someone you love. Having goofy dance parties in pjs. Watching Paw Patrol for the billionth time because your children giggle so cute during it (and it's more tolerable than Caillou.) Messy baking sessions in the kitchen. Reading cuddles in our king size bed with what seems like every comforter we ever own. Being a mother is exhilarating and fun! A whole lot of fun!
That is...if you allow yourself to experience it in that truth.
No, it is not all rainbows and chocolate. Between house chores, runny noses and tantrums over literal spilled milk, motherhood can make a woman want to curl up in a locked bathroom just for peace! Or at least a good cry and hopefully a cup of coffee that's NOT cold. But those are just moments in a big season. Those things pass. It is up to us to decide just how fast do we want to move past the hard parts after they've lived out their time or drag them out.
I used to do that. One thing went wrong, and I complained about it for days. I let it steal my joy and it made me into a grumpy mama. It made me hold grudges against these little people and it really wasn't fair. Then God started showing me how my behavior and words were affecting my boys. If I automatically say that motherhood is boring, I will have a tough time looking for the excitement in it all. If I'm constantly pointing out the flaws and obsess about the mistakes, that's all my focus will be on. Motherhood WILL be mundane because that's where my eyes are looking.
But if I stay present in the moments that matter, I've learned that I can enjoy my children more. The way they laugh, how they play a certain way, funny mannerisms they do or listening to their mini conversations with other minis. Small pockets of joy! My eyes are no longer on the negative but the reality. I can see my children as people, not supporting actors in my own emotional drama.
If you are a mother, you're life is not mundane. You get to raise humans! As scary as that might be, think of how amazing that is too!! Mothers are brave soldiers, fighting on the front lines for their babies. They are sleep deprived mentors that blow on booboos and hold hands when their little hearts need comfort. Moms are home base. We are the constant thing and if their constant thing is always complaining, always upset, always in a bad mood...how does that make them feel? Or better yet, how will that affect them as they grow older?
So please. When you see me totting my youngin's around the grocery store, don't assume I dislike shopping with my kids. Most of our favorite memories have been in stores with the boys helping me, because I didn't want to have those feelings during a stressful errand. So we usually turn stress into silly and that makes everything more manageable for me as a mother! It's not all perfect and sometimes it's not funny. Like not even a little bit. But when we change our perspective, we can change our environment. The key is WANTING to change.
Motherhood is frustrating, challenging and overwhelming at times. But did you really expect to stay the same after having children? Think about it! Why do we think having kids won't change us as people? It has to. To me, having a mundane life is something unfulfilling. Something painfully routine with so much order that being spontaneous is frowned upon. Something that is the opposite of motherhood. I'm beyond thankful that God chose me to watch over these precious angels and teach them things. I'm not going to get it all right and the entire process will not be smooth sailing. I will not be grabbing a megaphone anytime soon shouting "That was easy! Next challenge, Lord!" Uh no. Instead I will take one day at a time, and marvel at the great opportunity I have. Many women desire motherhood but it never happens for them. But it did happen to me and I will not curse this blessing by calling it boring. If you need proof, I have thousands of photobombed selfies to prove it.