Updated on November 11, 2017
Humbled to be your momma
Tricky business at best.
When your kids are little, all you can think about somedays is surviving. There were days I would be counting down the day by the activity. Dinner, bath, snack, story, and bedtime. Then came laundry, dishes, my own shower and possibly tv, unless I fell asleep on the couch. I got busy doing all the things for all the little people. I had no idea I was missing so many things, so many moments. I never heard anyone say “slow down a bit momma”, so I didn’t.
Full throttle ahead for grocery store trips, birthday parties and holidays. Immunizations and new shoes combined with a milkshake on the way home only led into the evening routine of dinner, bath…you get the picture. There was a lot of “stuff” to be done with four kids. The obligatory parenting things were high in number, and at times overwhelming. It was a wild and crazy time.
You may be surprised to hear me say, some days I would give anything to just go back to the year 2000 and spend my time differently. My kids are officially all adults now, and there are things I feel like I need to teach them still.
Can I get a re-do?
Can I get a few, life-changing moments in the year 2000, to save my children some of the heartaches they are experiencing right now?
Can I have a couple of minutes to change my thoughts, my answers, my reactions in the year 2010?
Can I get Marty Mc Fly to take me back in time to tell myself to slow down and think about the future a bit?
I love my adult kids. Clearly, the regrets I may have are all about the things I missed teaching them. They are a group of amazing people. If I had to use a few keywords to describe them, I would say:
It seems really easy for me to look back now and say, “I wish I had…” I spend time with my granddaughters and realize how much I missed with my own kids because I was as busy as their parents are with them. I want to scream- WAIIIIITTTTT! You’re missing it! But I realize, they are me- twenty years ago and busy making a life. They are doing all the things I was doing. Most of all, they are surviving it all.
Parenting didn’t start out graceful, and we still won’t make a shiny magazine cover. But we make a family, and this is what it is all about.
Loving my adult children has come so easy because they are so awesome. If I sound like I am gushing, it’s because I am. I should be. They make me proud. They also make me shake my head sometimes. On those days, I remember when they were toddlers because sometimes they act just the same.
Now instead of bikes all over the yard its cars and car parts. It’s their kids’ toys and the chaos of grandchildren and grand-dogs I must contend with. It’s helping them to heal in loss and grief while encouraging them to express themselves because they are individuals. It’s watching them make some of the same mistakes I did and laughing because “I told you so” is written on my face, and they know what that looks like.
No one ever prepared me for the great amount of loss I felt when the first one left the nest. It overcame our entire household and rocked our world. No one ever warned me about the new kind of sleepless nights, the worry and the need for comfort for my broken momma’s heart. No one ever prepared me for the quiet house, the feeling something just isn’t the same or the emotion of missing them so much.
They also didn’t prepare me for the sheer amount of joy and privilege I have felt and embraced, knowing how my adult kids turned out to be. The one thing I do know, and cling to?
These adults will always be Mikey, Grace, Mattie, and Maxx to their momma. And there will never be a day when their place in my heart shrinks because it was amazing to have them toddling around as children, and even more breathtaking to know them as adults.
I am honored.