Monday, November 2, 2009

Good and Tired

It is 7:30 p.m. To me it feels like 11:30 p.m. For some reason today has felt exceedingly long. At one point today I though to myself, "surely it must be dinner time!" I looked at the clock. It was noon. I already felt as if I had lived an entire day in the hours from waking up at 7 am till noon.

Moments ago I tucked my little girls in their beds and went to nurse Noble back to sleep because they had woken him up. I sat on Lauren's bed watching Sabrina read her Nancy Drew book and waiting for Lauren to come back with her blankie so I could kiss her good night. I was tired. I felt that exhaustion from the day. And I thought to myself, "what a wonderful time of my life this is."

Someday they will be reading Twilight instead of Nancy Drew. Someday they will not ask me to stay and snuggle them a little longer. Someday my arms will not be tired from carrying little people. Someday there will be baby left to nurse. Someday there will be no little cheeks needing goodnight kisses before they can sleep. Someday ... but not today.

And today I find joy in the cheeks, and the kisses, and cuddles, and innocence. And today I welcome the clinging, and the whining, and the dirty clothes and hands and feet. Today I welcome the mouths that need me to feed them and the bodies that need me to hold them. Today I welcome the exhaustion of motherhood.

I used to think I just had to "get through" this period of motherhood. Babies are so much work. I used to think of the first year as the sacrifice you give to get the joy of the child that a baby becomes. But that was before.

I still think children get more and more fun the older they get (so far at least). But now I treasure even the "sacrifice" parts of motherhood. They too make up part of the mosaic that is my experience as a mother. And all these good and tiring and wonderful experiences are creating day by day my children's childhood. And I will work till I am good and tired to make sure that their childhood is a beautiful thing.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

I think it's so wonderful that you treasure those moments you have with your children and realize how lucky you are to have them! I'm in my late 30's and would give anything...ANYTHING...to have a child of my own. But I'm still not married, so.. no children. To add insult to injury, my mother was diagnosed a few years ago with a fatal genetic disorder that I have a 50% chance of having myself and passing onto my child, should I have one. My heart aches for being a mother, but unless Heavenly Father can find a way, then it may never happen for me. So THANK YOU, Stephanie, for sharing your blog and letting people like me enjoy and appreciate your beautiful family from afar. You have shared both the joys and the sorrows. And you are loved for it! Thank you. (And sorry to go into my own "issues!)

Olsens R Us said...

I love this post. It is perhaps one of my all time favorites. It captures so much of how I feel, especially since I had a baby two weeks ago and my oldest got her license on Monday. I am feeling the "growing pains" that this step towards independence brings, while cherishing every moment of what I feel will be my last newborn. There is something to be said about basking in this time, because of and not in spite of all the sacrifice and work. You captured my heart's intent in this post and I appreciated reading my own thoughts in someone else's words. Reading your blog is one of my favorite things to do when the house is quiet and I can reflect on things. Thanks!

Megan D. said...

Stephanie, I have been thinking about you so much lately. Being pregnant with my third girl and wondering where life is going to take us with three LITTLE girls I wish we still had our mothers group in your mom's basement so I could sit you down and ask you mother questions like I used to do. I can't believe how big your little boy is (the Halloween pic). I need to come to one of your Wed. parties or something. You always have great advice!! ps. Thanks for the wonderful post. Being a mom is the best job anyone could have. I frequently find myself with a grateful heart for my beautiful little girls!

Lisa said...

This is beautiful. I need to print this out and read it on my "Long Mothering Days". Today wasn't so hot...at dinner, the kids just seemed so loud, and I argued with my oldest at bedtime. Sigh. I need to step back and see the treasures I have right in front of me.

Thank you.

Katie Jo said...

You never cease to inspire me to be a better Mother.

chanel said...

i hear ya! i was thinking the same thing last night- must go record it as you have- beautiful!

Pam said...

Amen! I can say that because I have been there and done that and I loved every minute of it. I now love watching them become young adults and married couples....waiting on my first grandchild....some day, but still waiting today....I can't wait though! A friend in East Texas, Pam.

Brad, Rebecca, Jacob said...

What a great post! I far too often find myself wishing away my children's childhood. I am tired and they are whining. I haven't had a loss like yours to remind me of the gift that they are. So through your blog, I am trying to remember to enjoy even the sacrifices of motherhood. Thank you!

Amber said...

Beautifully expressed Stephanie. Thank you! I don't know if you're aware, but Chad and I are in Bucharest, Romania for a while as he does some work for a company here. I've joined the blogging ranks, you can see what we're up to at adventuresinpinkdom.blogspot.com

Presley family said...

simply beautiful..
BIG HUGS!

angela said...

This is a lovely post. It makes me remember to come by your blog more often! :> I so wish I had taken more time with my first or second child to feel this way. I think it took that third child to teach me to slow down and enjoy it. Because we do enjoy it, even the messy/tired/constant/etc nature of motherhood. Thank you for the well-written reminder!

Rhyetta Musser said...

This post is so right on. I feel so much like you USED TO feel, that I have to "get through" the baby's first year of life to then enjoy the rest of it. Your post speaks a truth that I have a hard time remembering. I wonder if you can capture it even more succinctly, perhaps in a poem or paragraph? I know I am a good mother...but I don't enjoy it enough. How can I? How can I wake up and feel eager to be their mother rather than feel eager to get to bedtime?