No matter how old you get ... or how old your kids get ... you will always be their mother. The duties may change, but they don't go away.
I have a bad habit of saying what I think, especially to my kids, even though they are all adults now. I get myself in trouble. Maybe I should respect the fact that they are adults and keep my thoughts to myself ... or just complain to my friends and get all the feedback I need from them. (Although some of my friends are way too honest and let me know when I'm out of line! Hate them! But also love them more than ever!)
Maybe some of you don't see it from my perspective. Maybe you are tired of your mother's meddling; maybe you wish she would hush up and leave you alone. But I know from personal experience that the day may come when she is not there anymore, and you wish you could be annoyed by her one more time.
If you have small children of your own, maybe you can't imagine them ever making bad choices. They will be perfect angels, making wise decisions their whole lives. Sorry, someday you may find out that it doesn't work that way! And you may eventually take my place, the old mother hen who wants to do whatever you can to help them, guide them, and try to save them from the hardest knocks, even if it means upsetting your more responsible kids.
Sadly, I'm finding myself sympathizing more and more with the "old ladies" I knew at church who seemed so irritated when the younger crowd spouted their idiocies (yes, even then I knew that a lot of it was pretty naive). I guess I'm one of them now! Most of the women at my current ward are young mothers, similar in age to my daughters, and I can hardly stand to listen to them sit smugly back and assume that their children will never smoke, drink, or get body piercings. Almost every Sunday I hear the class -- even the teacher -- proudly proclaim the wise choices her four-year-old made last week. Occasionally an older mother with teenagers will say something like, just wait, you don't know what you're in for. But she is usually dismissed and often secretly judged harshly because of her kids' struggles. They believe that if that mother had done all of the "right" things, her kids wouldn't be like that. Well, I admit that I made plenty of mistakes, but I tried my best to be a good mother. I had some great successes and some awful failures. Who gets the credit? Who takes the blame? I personally believe that most of it is the result of who that person really is inside their soul, who they were before they came to this earth. We guide and direct them as best we can, but they are who they always were. So ... when they do well, they get the credit. When they mess up, we take at least some of the blame! And yes, we did sign up for this!
I'm glad to be where I am now, on the other side of both things (little kids and teenagers)! And I'm especially grateful that I'm done fighting the school district! Whoopee! I've been done for several years now (it's been almost two years since Jimmy graduated from high school), but the joy and happiness is still there.
But my point is that each person on this earth was born with their own personality, with strengths and weaknesses. Each person has his own challenge to overcome. As parents it is our duty to lead and guide them in the direction that will bring them the best life and the most happiness, but in the end, they make their own choices, just the same as we did.
And back to the parenthood issue ... were my children sent to me to be their mother only until they are 18 years old? Am I done now? I don't think so. Sorry, kids, I'll be hovering until I'm lowered -- into the ground! And maybe even longer than that!
Today was a typical Monday morning. I forced myself out of bed when the alarm went off, feeling sad that the weekend was over (already). I made myself get in the shower immediately to wake myself up or I would no doubt burn up too much time staring into space (heaven help me if a stray magazine caught my attention). I fed the animals and was contemplating my piece of toast when I saw the clock and had to rush through getting ready so I could get in the car and petal-to-the-metal to try to get to the office on time. I was dragging myself from the parking lot towards the building when I saw, up ahead of me, a youngish guy in a maintenance uniform. As he passed under a tree, he jumped into the air and touched the lowest-hanging branch. His whole demeanor showed joy. My first thought was, good grief, that's way too much happiness for 8:00 on a Monday morning!
Then it hit me ... maybe he had been out of work and he just got this job. What joy there would be in getting a job at a wonderful place like this, with benefits and the great people who work here. Even if he hadn't been out of work, maybe he knows someone who is, and he's grateful for what he has here.
And so should I. How can I be grumpy about Monday morning when I have a job as great as this one? Plus I have a wonderful family that loves me (hopefully most of the time) and great friends who stand by me and listen to my complaints and love me in spite of the fact that they know me very well.
God forgive me when I whine ... I have this life, the world is mine! Even on a Monday morning.
I just saw something new (new to me anyway) on a friend's blog and decided to try it.
You Google your first name and put "needs" after it, both words in quotes. So, I Googled "Karen needs". Then you write down the first ten things that come up that make any kind of sense at all. Here is what I got (really, truly!) ...
Karen needs a lobotomy fund Karen needs special rehab therapy(those first two are kind of similar. Hope that doesn't mean anything.) Karen needs to uncomplicate her routines and play to her partners' strengths(what partner? Do dogs count?) Karen needs to get her a*$ off the ground and actually do some work.(huh?) Karen needs a man for nsa(I hope that's nothing kinky) Karen needs a new helmet Karen needs a vacation(always always always true but my friends went to China without me --AGAIN) Karen needs to kick/box Tyra's butt outta town!(lemme at her, just introduce me first) Karen needs some gin while at lunch with her sister(Cristie, come on down!) Karen needs our prayer Well, at least that last one works.
Everyone ... give it a try! Or maybe you did this two years ago and it's really tired and old. Oh well! I am, too!
More than two years ago, the last time we were all together
Really yummy toffee -- you must try it!
This may confirm that I'm a little strange, but I loved this poem!
What We Might Be, What We Are by X.J. Kennedy
If you were a scoop of vanilla And I were the cone where you sat, If you were a slowly pitched baseball And I were the swing of a bat,
If you were a shiny new fishhook And I were a bucket of worms, If we were a pin and a pincushion, We might be on intimate terms.
If you were a plate of spaghetti And I were your piping-hot sauce, We'd not even need to write letters To put our affection across,
But you're just a piece of red ribbon In the beard of a Balinese goat And I'm a New Jersey mosquito. I guess we'll stay slightly remote.
I couldn't resist adding a link to the family cookbook created by my sweet nieces!
Fantastic quote ...
I saw this quote on someone else's blog and I just had to steal it. "Anyone who imagines that bliss is normal is going to waste a lot of time running around shouting that he has been robbed. The fact is that most putts don't drop, most beef is tough, most children grow up to be just ordinary people, most successful marriages require a high degree of mutual toleration, most jobs are more often dull than otherwise. Life is just like an old time rail journey. . .delays, sidetracks, smoke, dust, cinders and jolts interspersed only occasionally by beautiful vistas and thrilling bursts of speed. The trick is to thank the Lord for letting you have the ride." --Gordon B. Hinckley