Thursday, April 24, 2014

Another Day in the Life

Recently I've read a few blog posts talking about 'Parenting with Purpose' and "10 Tips for Stay at Home Moms'. I read them but still can't get the titles out of my head.  I imagine myself writing either one of these posts and I feel completely and utterly unqualified to do so.  I wonder to myself what it would take for me to feel like I was in fact qualified to write them.  My conclusion: I do not know, perhaps when I am old and can look back, I may have wisdom for younger mamas that I don't currently possess.

I am a stay at home mom.  I have six children.  Two who live on their own, 2 in high school and 2 in all day Kindergarten.  You may wonder what I do with my life.  I don't actually "do" anything outside of being a mom really but my days are very full.  Most days I have a rough idea of what I am going to do but I have learned to be very flexible because anything can happen, and it usually does.

I woke up this morning, got the twins ready and as I was driving them to school my 17 year old texted me that he had accidentally taken his night time medicine instead of his morning medicine.  The problem is that he takes a sleeping pill at night.  This has happened to me and it's not fun!  Poor kid, he's in the middle of performing for a Choir contest in school.  I imagine him standing at the top riser where the tenors stand.  It's now been 1 1/2 hours since he took the sleeping pill and he says he is having a hard time standing up.  He does not want to let his teacher down so he states he will try to make it through.

I call the teacher, get her voicemail and leave a message about what has happened and that he will do what is needed to make up the points he will lose for leaving.  I call the school nurse to let her know so that when she sees him she does not think he is on illegal drugs.  I have already been through that experience in real life.  I finally convince him to go to the nurse and I will meet him at school.

Meanwhile Roman and Rya are coloring because it's a 20 minute car ride to school and that is way too long for them to go without creating something, so this is our normal.  Roman, who is hearing impaired but still catches more than most people, has apparently been listening.  "What am I suppose to go to the nurse for?"  I tell him I was talking about Sterling to which he replies, "Yeah, what's the deal with everyone calling him Sterling when we all know his real name is 'Do-Ah'?

I laugh real hard because I love that even if I tried to explain it to him, he would think I was wrong.  When they were little, they couldn't say Sterling's name right and it came out "Do-Ah".  That's what he's called at our house to this day.

I drop the little ones off and pick up Sterling.  When we get in the driveway I can barely get him out of the car.  He is moving but his eyes remain closed.

Meanwhile, Linnea texts me.  Have I mentioned that I love, love LOVE that my kids have phones and have the ability to communicate with me throughout the school day?  There's not much I miss because they keep me pretty up to date about the good, the bad and the ugly parts of their day.  Imagine if Sterling had gone to the nurse without me having first explained to her what was going on?  Anyway, Linnea texted me asking if we could go to Clive's tonight to watch the Minnesota Wild play in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.  Clive's is a sport's bar where our oldest daughter works.

I smiled.  Love languages.  They all have them.  Time is one of her love languages.  What she was really saying was; "That was really fun when you and Dad took me to watch the game with you the other night, can we do it again?"

I'm painfully aware of how quickly our time with our children passes.  My oldest daughter is in Florida as I write this looking for an apartment and plans to move there in July.  My heart feels squeezed each time I say the words.

My husband likes to make fun of me because I am one of those people who finds it necessary to take note of or should I say cherish the "lasts".  I verbally said that this past Easter might have been our "last" Easter together as a family.  Recently one of the kids lost a tooth.  I looked at my husband and laughingly said "this is the last time we are going to experience our kids loosing their first teeth."

Ironically, for all of my taking note of the "lasts", six years ago we were given the gift of experiencing all of the firsts, lasts and in betweens over again when a friend of ours asked us to adopt her unborn twins.

I know that I parent the youngest two differently than I did the older 4.  I'm older and a little tired, a bit wiser, a little more patient and a lot more aware of the short amount of time we have to teach, mold, love and have them.

My youngest sister is about to have her first child.  I think about what I might say to her to offer sisterly advice about parenting.  I don't know.  Don't sweat the small stuff, trust yourself, lean on Jesus, make your marriage a priority, take a lot of pictures, don't compare yourself to others, be present, be real, have a good support network, don't grocery shop with kids, be flexible and find joy in the journey!

I have to miss my sister's baby shower because my daughter has a soccer tournament.  I was feeling a lot of guilt about it because you only get a baby shower once and there are lots of soccer games.  I am the team manager and required to be there.  My husband told me I was making the right choice because by being present in my children's lives, they will not one day say to me "I needed you and you weren't there."  I can be confident that my job as a mom trumps all things other than my marriage and my relationship with God.

There is nothing glamorous about my life but it is the life I have chosen and continue to choose.  I may not feel qualified to share tips on Parenting with Purpose or being a Stay at Home Mom but I am giving my best effort to both.


White Lace and Promises said...

Oh sweet girl. You are doing a beautiful job of living the legacy and you have so very much to give and encourage other young mothers. During the next few years there will be many "lasts." I remember the last High School musical, the last high school baseball game, the last college and forever baseball game, the last walk across the stage, the last dance, the last kiss before they are man and wife. And each time, my heart would almost burst. I kept on sunglasses as the tears rolled down my face the day of my son's last forever baseball game. You are doing such a great job! Have I've done the same thing with my meds. LOL! My night pill and one of my morning pills is the same size and color:)

Anonymous said...

Gina, this is so perfect. I miss having you closer in my life as I am going through all of these firsts over and over again! Thanks for mentoring me from afar :) You are doing a wonderful job and Christ is working it all out through you...
-Rachel D

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