Sunday, May 12, 2013

Mother's Day

It's Mother's Day, a day I've hated for years and years. I've had such a difficult and painful relationship with my mother, a mother who betrayed me in the worst way as a child. I've been able to move on and forgive, but there's no repairing the damage. So, Mother's Day was always the day I skipped church and avoided the cheesy platitudes around me.

Today, though, my heart is full. I'm a mother to two little boys, and one more little soul on the way. Deciding to have this baby was a difficult one for us, and it almost didn't happen. It's sort of a setback in some ways, and a financial burden of unknown consequences.

But as I watched my boys today, as we spent the day without their dad who has duty aboard his submarine for the next 24 hours, as I felt this child kick and grow within me, I found myself overwhelmed with gratitude that we'd decided to take this chance once more.

I never really thought I'd do this whole stay-at-home mother gig. My own mother had done so, and I don't think it made her particularly happy at all. I was terrified of repeating her mistakes, or finding myself unable to give my children what they needed most. I feared that since I lacked a good role model, I had no ability to be a good mother at all.

However, I married a sailor, and when we decided to have kids, I fell into this role because it was the only one that made any real sense. It's been a real challenge, but I'm so grateful for the last eight years of watching my children grow. I ache to hold this last little one, and know that we did the right thing by taking the chance to add another to our family.

Most of all, I'm so happy to discover I am not doomed to repeat the mistakes of my own mother, that there is a way to grow out of it and be someone completely different. Today was a good Mother's Day, a day that wasn't full of flowers or fancy presents, but was full of love from my little boys.

I am a lot of things, and I know that when the kids leave the house, I will find other things to fill my time, other ways to give, but I know that nothing I will ever do will ever be as powerful or have the greatest potential to change the future as what I do at home as a mother. I know this because I am acutely aware of what happens when your own mother isn't there when you need her, when she wounds instead of heals. There are some scars that never go away.

Friday, May 3, 2013

So. I've been gone from here for months. And they were eventful months, but I'm not going to try to catch up, nor do I even want to write about most of it. Suffice it to say, I'm glad to be on the other side for the most part.

The thing I'm NOT on the other side of, though, is this pregnancy. I'm 35 weeks, and hoping it won't go on for any more than four more weeks. I've been contracting off and on since about 28 weeks, so maybe I'll get lucky. Or, maybe not. Cervix check next week for some more concrete information. All I know is that I can't sleep any more, my feet are swelling (sigh - didn't have that problem with the last two pregnancies), and this bowling ball in my stomach makes it really hard to do anything requiring  bending.

All that to say, I'm excited to hold this baby in my arms. Scared, yes, but excited. It's been over five years since we had a newborn in the house. Our life is very different - all babyproofing is about three houses back from the one we live in now. We can take the kids to movies and ride almost all the rides at Disney World. No one wears diapers during the day, and can hold it when they REALLY need to go.  I don't know how this is going to go, but I think we'll figure it out somehow.

As for homeschooling - we've got to test this month. I can't put it off anymore. The results are due August 1st, and with this baby due, I want it out of the way and in the mail before I have to deal with another kid around. I found a place that has both paper and online testing, so I think we'll do it on the computer. Most of the testing Wyatt did in the Bahamas was on a computer, so I'm thinking that will be the easiest solution for all concerned (I wasn't looking forward to teaching him how to fill in the bubble).

Also, when this is out of the way, I can feel okay about quitting school for awhile. The plan is to take about a month off, then keep up a lighter schedule of math, spelling, and reading through the rest of the summer. Then we'll get back on track with a fuller schedule than we had this past year as we figured out what the heck we were doing.

Unless, of course, we end up moving again. Which might happen. I'd like to shake my fist at the Navy right now. Not that they care what I think, of course.

On the plus side, I think I've FINALLY worked out all child care options if the baby doesn't show up in the week I have in-house help. It's really rough to move and then find out your pregnant. So many details to work out with so little information and help. We'll figure this out, though. One day at a time.