Hey Mom, Remember

Lately its turned into that hot, disgusting kind of Texas summer, when it’s nearly impossible to remember the joy in taking my children to do anything outdoors – whether it’s in the backyard for any great length of time or just taking the dogs on a decent length walk to get a breather from being inside all day. By late afternoon, we’re going crazy with boredom, which causes me to be that cranky mom. When dad gets home, in his efforts to give me a break, he offers (or I nominate) to take the youngest on a walk, or takes them all up to the playground/basketball court across the highway. 

Outside Activities

They haven’t been able to do a lot of that, in regards to my son getting to go play basketball, because it seems as if the surrounding areas where he usually plays, all have some kind of issue with the hoop, or the court itself. My daughter’s thrilled to be out of the house and to do anything for whatever length of time by this point in the day, which is usually close to the sun starting to go down, so that gives them a tad more opportunity to enjoy themself without ending up panting from the humidity.

Now, of course, this just happens to be the time when my sister-in-law and my nephew are staying with us, until we close on their home in the next week or so – my brother’s in the military, and out of the country for a short-while longer. So, with this being the first that we’ve all lived in the same city in adulthood, I can imagine the first impression that they’re getting, particularly of their niece, being the youngest.

She has some major meltdowns occasionally, if I’m being honest. I get pretty embarrassed though, as she has one of her bossy moments, that may be pretty standard for our crew to deal with but to others can be fairly appalling.


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Hopefully they’re not going to judge me, but I don’t know if that’s true when I can hear them practically counting the minutes to make it out of our driveway. Ha. Pretty sure most people would be doing that. 

On the weekends, we’ve fought the weather in our attempt to go to this or that event around town (which is outside, obvi), and we’ll stay for an hour or two, until we feel like we’re going to pass out. A 5-year-old in the midst of the steam room we call our city, with hundreds of others present, will inevitably be the first to lose it!


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THAT’S MY GIRL, HURLING herself at our legs. But you know what, I feel her tantrum, I respect it even.

Though it ends up making me have one of those “guilty mother” moments, for even thinking it was a good idea to take them out there. We don’t want to go to McDonald’s, since we practically live there during the week.


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The alternative seems to be dressing in the most weather appropriate attire, and then hoping for the best. We’re usually pretty excited to get out.

The kids are happy for us to all be together and do something, plus, if we’d done any of the regular, boring activities done inside, which are typically the defaults, she’d have still melted down at some point anyway. Then, it would’ve been the sign needed for us to wrap things up – no biggie, right? However, in these moments – of our hitting 100-degrees easy in the summer, after grasping at straws trying to make the weekend enjoyable for us all, that’s when it causes my ego to feel a bit bruised. Then the self-criticism kicks in, while I’m looking around at all the others, to observe if they’re having any success, while questioning my own ability to ever give my kids some memories to remember when we’re all relaxed and smiling. 

Here We Are

So, here we are: Twenty-eight days into the summer, juggling being a mother and a Realtor; a trillion days into ornery, bored babies; a kajillion days into being the expert multi-tasker that I am. Like always, my list of things to do each day starts by getting the little one out and about, in the cooler part of the day. After that, it’s not unusual for my daughter to bring up how she’s missing her friends from school, or her teacher (one of the subjects that breaks my heart to talk about), then she starts anticipating the new year to begin in August, the same month of her birthday…My hope is that she’ll have another sweet person to spend her school days with. Let me correct myself – my plea is, her first grade teacher will be yet another gentle soul, because every single prayer got answered with the teacher we received in her Kindergarten year. 

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Here we are, in the dead of summer, stuck inside and my son would love for the school year to quite frankly never return (all of a sudden, those dreaded days are here for HIM), and my little girl just wants to jump back into the routine. But for me, my spirit’s kinda numb, and I’m not 100% sure WHY.

There’s not really anything that’s CAUSING it. But I can assure you, there’s gotta be a cause. 

Quit That!

When my thoughts try interjecting with my heart to cease feeling so much, my question is “why not just let everything that will be, be?” Are my concerns about being able to provide a happy life for the kids really something to get myself worked up over? My negativity about my being this kind of person – an emotional, silly woman – now takes over. How come I just CAN’T seem get it together?? is what runs through my mind.


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Obviously, there’s way more to it than whether I’m a good mother. If someone’s not coping very well, with whatever they’ve got going on at the time; when they’re emotional because life’s just going by at lightening speed, the tiniest thing will cause them to be pushed right to the edge. 

Right then, the lightbulb went off: while I was encouraging myself to go to McDonald’s for one of them new Rollo McFlurry’s I’d seen, so I could inhale it, while figuring out when my buyers would be able to close on their new home, and what new marketing I could put out for my sellers…Wham!, a verse from the Bible came to me (most definitely God knocking some sense into me), echoing ‘But you who follows the true way have come to the light. Then the light will show that whatever you’ve done was done through God’ (John 3:21). Well that did it, yep..easy peasy.

I felt the tears welling up in my eyes, however my heart, all of a sudden, felt very full. Partly because of the Rollo McFlurry.

But more so about remembering who it is that I am – while curling up on the couch, eating the ice cream for whatever quiet time I was being given; overlooking the messy floor, the piles of clothes needing to be put away, I was being provided what it was that I yearned for the most, a mental shutdown. By this, it halted that process of giving myself another guilt-trip. 

To Summarize

Ladies, this is the deal: Sometimes everyone is going to treat us like caca, our children are going to piss and moan about every little thing and people will judge us for this when we’re out in public, there’s no one who we can think of to listen to our own bitching and moaning, and we become fairly certain we’re the biggest reject to ever walk the earth. Sometimes we’re going to set some pretty unrealistic goals that we’ll actually try to accomplish..rearrange the entire house, be a better wife, get fit by day 30 (remember, it’s already day 28) of summer.

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Sometimes we’re not going to want to get out of bed, we’ll be a bitch, lose our shit, cry, isolate and be depressed – and yes, it’ll all be done together, in one day, some of the time. Sometimes, we’ll be pushed really close to the edge, and not be able to quite put our finger on why. 

Remember, though, God’s got our back. 

How hard it is to remember this little nugget of truth sometimes, though. However, our ice cream, the get fit in less than a week fantasy, that extra-large margarita, massage, texting someone who loves us and is willing to listen, curling up for a soap opera marathon, WHATEVER it is that brings us peace – it’s what’s going to change our course. It’s dire for us to remember and take care of ourselves once in awhile, whether it’s just for 10 minutes, or for two glorious hours. We must pay attention to the verses that jump into our heads, that helps us to remember to breathe, to be at peace. 

Ain’t Life Grand?

Then, when we have those times where we’re at our best, and we can’t imagine living a better life than the one we’ve been given..it’s dire that we then be that source of peace for someone else. By providing a smile towards someone who appears to be stressed out, or providing some words of wisdom to that mother we see, who’s at her wit’s end – I mean, what better way to show another person the light. 

Remember, we’ve been shown the way. We must also remember to show it to those who are still in the dark. Just remember to also get an extra McFlurry.

But you who follows the true way have come to the light. Then the light will show that whatever you’ve done was done through God. John 3:21

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Is It Because I Love Eminem? Maybe

“I say what I want to say and do what I want to do. There’s no in between. People will either love you for it or hate you for it.” Eminem

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It Says What?!

The day we found out that we were expecting (AGAIN!!) was quite a shock. I thought our son, who was almost 9 years old, was the last baby to develop in this womb!

But the fact that our two youngest are so many years apart, has no bearing whatsoever on them being at each other’s throats from the minute that they come into contact with one another for that day. Which makes the fact that every time we seem to be in public and people, particularly strangers, comment “Aren’t they just the sweetest things?”, so mind-boggling?!

Lost In Love

I find myself gazing at them, my daughter – only 5 years old and in Kindergarten; then, my son, who’s 15 and a freshman. Looking at them, I begin passionately feeling like anyone who sees such sweetness worthy of mentioning in these wild kids..well, surely they have to be senile.

“Thanks, they really are”, is usually my words that get murmured back. After all, I’m certain there’s not an appropriate way to address, that my 5-year-old can typically resemble the likes of The Incredible Hulk at times. But, all kidding aside…

A Perfect Gentleman

There’s not any denying that my handsome Isaac (minus the immature battles with his sister, of course) has the absolute sweetest demeanor. Our son was certainly handled with kid-gloves for many years, plus he’d lived around primarily females for his whole existence!

Those adorable, puffy (almost red) lips, surrounded with a strong, masculine jaw line, like his dad’s, wouldn’t help to convince anyone that he was anything but a prince anyway. When people say this kid’s sweet – well, I absolutely get it!

Auto Assumption

Some might automatically be inclined to assume that since he’s not a loud and abrasive young man, and that he’s actually very affectionate and has good manners, maybe his “genetic makeup” was just created that way. Seems like that’s where people are really quick to jump these days.

With all this being said, I feel inclined to mention that I’ve established a “rule” of sorts, when this son of mine with all of his sweetheart features that he’s so often commended for, is getting these qualities acknowledged. The rule is: as his beloved mother (ahem), I must always refrain from appearing bewildered when people assume that he’s an angel, and it’s just moments after we get out of the car that he’s been antagonizing his younger sister in.

I Love Being His Mom

As his beloved mother (ok, I won’t call myself that again, I promise…), I mustn’t go to interject, unless there’s an adequate reason to. Like, if said individual that’s making the statement is at a high school football game that he happens to be playing defense in. Obviously, then I’ll have to correct them.

Quickly followed by how he’s about to shove a football down their son’s throat. Not my finest moment…(Even if the students who were in the stands found their day was just a little bit brighter afterwards, according to one of our older daughters anyway.)

Always My Baby

It’s been by my choice to protect and coddle my “baby” boy for all these years. Resulting in him being a sensitive, somewhat of a mama’s boy.

So, of course, it’s more likely to get approached so much by others and that they’d have disbelief to the suggestion of him having any antagonistic bone in his body. I might as well brace myself for the compliments; leaving the “he keeps touching my head!” memories for those few who get to experience it, at home.

Oddly Enough

Another thing I find funny about this, is that you’d think that by walking next to my husband, and the two of them constantly trying to one-up each other and wrestle one another down to the ground, that it’d make a difference in the “he’s so sweet” comments; it doesn’t.
I guess when the boy’s got some adorable lips, folks just want to default to him being a saint.

Now, obviously, I get that people are paying a sweet compliment and don’t assume he’s perfect, but when I’m feeling somewhat defensive because I just got finished lecturing him, my ears are hearing something completely different: “How could ANY mother get upset with this young man! There must be something wrong with her!”

The Factors Involved..and Eminem

I’ve certainly considered the “bad” things that come with letting our boy’s natural personality develop. Being that this includes being softer spoken and a gentle heart, one might ask why I wouldn’t teach him to have more of a thick skin.

And I’m sure some of you have watched moms like myself – the ones that put their little guys up on a pedestal, wiping away their every tear, as their growing into the school-age – and probably thought that we’re setting our sons up for some real hard times in life. It isn’t (any longer) in my nature to be the type of woman that judges other moms on their different techniques. However, for those who feel that’s beneficial somehow, let me go ahead and sketch a more clear picture of how my line of thinking pushed this mom to let our boy’s personality form him to become the special guy he is:

*This was and is my only son.

My little man always had this awesome, loving outlook on life since he was young; he also remained somewhat reserved, frequently watching all of us for how we’d react or feel about different things. I don’t deny that I was still just immature enough to believe this good-natured kid was because of any of my doing.

OK, well, maybe it was just a little bit…

My son was the polar opposite to my oldest girl’s personality, who was outgoing and peppy from birth. And though my second daughter also had a very curious interest in people, having the influence of her older sister turned her just as outgoing and peppy (with a bit more sass) at an early age. Then you’ve got me: coming off very direct and seemingly sure of what I wanted.

Just Do You

So even though the world teaches us, and even more so at this time, that we should raise our little girls as feminine and proper, and our little boys to be protectors, or “manly”, my own motherly instincts suggested that I just embrace his sweet innocence.

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*He was the first child who was a BOY that I could stand being around in my “adult” years. In my opinion, kids were awful and loud; little dirty heathens, and specifically the little guys, who were certainly not what I’d refer to as pleasant to be around. These kids, from my perspective at the time, were all behaved in what I liked to call “Take Me Straight to Hell”. I wasn’t that young girl that was anxiously waiting for kids one day, in case you can’t tell, but I loved each of my babies and of course, they were the exceptions.

*He’ll eventually change.

And that scares me. I’m scared of this f***ed up world influencing him to be anything other than the way that God created him so uniquely to be; as well, that he won’t appreciate what an amazing person he already is (I’ve mentioned that he’s amazing, right?).

To add to that, my crazy might go into overdrive, if anyone attempted to destroy this boy’s spirit.

All of this could sum up the reasons for me embracing all of him, as he is and will be. The reasons for him having any bad behavioral habits, should only come from me and his dad; that way we can make excuses for us teaching him the wrong things, then keep going forward.

Don’t Cross This Mother

But should anyone else play a major part in it, my line of thoughts might escape reality..and cause me to start reading up on the best ways to deal large amounts of pain to someone’s kneecaps. AND..this is what we’re dealing with.

*I had a love affair with Eminem..In my mind, of course. Eminem does whatever the hell Eminem wants, with a middle finger raised to anyone who tries to tell him otherwise. BUT, Eminem also has a line that he walks, when it comes to his daughter.

Fangirl

My heart belonged to Eminem at one time, so naturally, my pulse quickened when I found out there was an attainable man that exuded very similar qualities: rebelling against popular opinions; would lay down his life before letting anyone hurt those he loved. This was clearly a sealed deal for me.

My own personal version of Eminem in the flesh! Ok, not really, but you get the point.

The Negative World We Live In

I believe that others put negative connotations onto men who aren’t afraid to show their softer side; however, I think it screams “confidence” out pretty loudly, when a young man’s a natural gentleman..and if he can handle a football on top of that?? (OR if he’s Eminem.) You’re welcome, future daughter-in-law.
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PS. C’mon, do I really think the infatuation I had (SEE, honey? Had!) for Eminem really played some part in my being welcoming to our boy continuing to develop his natural God-given qualities? I suppose that’s a bit of a stretch…

Don’t Worry…I’m On Medication

Did I really have an internal love affair with Eminem? My lips are sealed. Besides, a lady should never kiss and tell..imaginary or otherwise!

*My boy, with his sweet personality, is better than your boy, who needs more class. My feeling is, that quite a few individuals who think that young men ought to be brought up differently than the way we’ve gone about things, will identify similarly to the parents who are standing by the wayside, watching Sweet Little Johnny..with his sailor mouth running, at teachers and students alike, showing a non-existent level of class and grace. Moms like myself despise behaviors such as these.

Disgusting

Not cute in the slightest. Pretty damn pathetic, actually.

So. There ya go! You may now proceed with kicking me out of the Booster Club.

But, Seriously…

Completely on a serious note though, here’s my final thoughts on it: I’ve got this sweet boy, who God blessed me with. At the age of around 5 years old, he nearly drowned, giving me and my husband one of the biggest scares of our life (i.e. guilt-tripping ourselves beyond belief). When I think of being here now without him, I could start sobbing hysterically and quite possibly never stop.

Mothers understand their children’s hearts, we just do; but we always wonder if people will ever see the same magnificent beings that we do. In retrospect, had that awful night not occurred, maybe I’d not have dropped everything to help him with each tiny task, or cuddle quite as much, for quite as long.

Line Up the Cattle

Instead, I might have gone along with the rest of the herd, and said “Boys don’t do (whatever)” or many other very unfortunate statements. Thinking about it further, it didn’t end up making him more sensitive, because that’s just who he is! What it did, was take away a little bit of my rough edges, and made me more sensitive, to my son’s personality.

Yes, I know that some of you are shaking your heads all over the place at me. You’re thinking I’m a coddling mom, but I don’t want you to misunderstand.

To Be Clear

I’m not an overbearing mother! Far from it. I give my kids the opportunity to go do things that make me cringe on the inside.

My mother raised my brother and I on her own for a great part of our upbringing. And she’s the first to admit that she’d try to protect us from the smallest of things, until our stepfather came along, suggesting that she loosen up the reigns a little.

Eminem
Other Mothers

And I know many moms now, that believe saying “no” frequently is the best way of teaching their kids to stay away from potentially harmful things! I’m somewhere in the middle, I suppose.

There’s so much more to come after adolescence, so WHEN I screw up, he’s going to have many other chances, to later do bigger screw-ups than mine! Which will end up making the ones that I do, almost cancel out!

Yeah, Yeah

Look at me, a completely regular citizen, despite not being able to walk with my friends down to the corner store at the bottom of the hill. Completely regular, y’all! A majority of the time. Xoxoxo