April 30, 2010

Week's End

I toyed with the idea of writing a fun, newsy post for the end of the week.  You know, describing how I finally taught Henry how to brush his back teeth.  (We use a mirror now.)  Or how I think Liam tried to kiss me for the first time last night.  Those things are wonderful and could be accompanied by cute photos.  But they don't do justice to what I experienced this week, what I learned and what, I hope, changes the way I live my life.

Although I have tried to keep it to a minimum, I'm sure strains of discontent have been noticeable in my posts.  There's no time.  There are too many chores.  There's not enough of me.  The baby won't stop screaming.   My job is no longer enjoyable. 

People close to me and who were aware of the many years I longed for children could not understand my negativity.  Hadn't all my dreams come true?  Weren't my children healthy and relatively happy?  Didn't we have a roof over our heads, health insurance and the beginning of a college fund?  Yes, yes, and yes.  And still, not a day went by that I didn't complain.  Kind of like this Amy Grant song but with less rhythm:

This may be a dream come true,
This may be poetry in motion,
This may be a dream come true,
But when it all comes down,
It's an awful lot to do.

If I wasn't complaining, losing patience with the children or dabbling in self-pity, I was spending hours feeling guilty about those very things.  But all that guilt (and sleepless nights) never changed my behavior.  It took an encounter with another mom to do that. 

To say that the scales fell from my eyes would sound melodramatic.  So I won't.  But they did.  After returning home, I saw everything in a new light.  Colors were brighter and my children's voices were sweeter.  My sticky floors made me smile and the pile of laundry made me laugh.  Trying to get two cranky boys ready for bed while they screamed and struggled out of their pajamas, made me thank God that I was given this opportunity each and every night.

Now I know, I haven't given details of this encounter with the amazing mom.  And I can't.  It wouldn't be fair.  She doesn't know that I walked away from our meeting moved to tears.  I don't know how she would feel about that.  I respect her and her children's privacy.  Maybe she will start her own blog.  If she does, stop reading mine--hers will be much more inspiring.

Well, if you read this far, you deserve one cute photo


  1. That's beautiful, Lara. I'm sure the other mom would be tickled to know that she's touched you in such a way.

    And that picture, that's adorable!

  2. Sometimes perspective is a wonderful thing. I had that happen to me when I was feeling SO sorry for myself that my son was sick and needed to have all these tests...until we checked into the children's hospital for one of those tests. It was then that I saw REALLY sick children and parents who really DID have a struggle and suddenly our brain MRI didn't seem so scary...

    Glad things look better (although I can certainly relate on wishing forever and then going, "Damn...this is a lot of work...")

  3. I agree with Long Haul, I've learned that life is all about perspective...I'm happy things are looking better for you.

    & Thanks for sharing the adorable photo!

  4. What a wonderful (and brave) post. You have no idea when something you say to someone else (whether in person or on a blog) is going to really affect them, but I've been thinking about this post a lot over the last few days. And you made me refocus once again on the fact that I've got everything I ever dreamed of... instead of focusing on the chaos and the exhaustion which is what I've been doing for a little too long. Thank you so much for this. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  5. It's really wonderful when we meet someone who is able to change our lives...make us look at things in a more positive way. I'm glad you met someone like that!

  6. I try to start and end every day thanking God for everything I have in my life. Even if I'm tired or stressed or worried about something, there is still so much I have to be thankful for in my life. I'm glad you got a fresh perspective on your life as a mother. I've always felt that any venting you do on your blog is healthy and you still love your boys no matter what, I'm positive you do and I have no doubt in you and your love for you kiddos.

  7. Thank goodness we all have those bad days, to appreciate the good ones even more. You are a wonderful mom, even in those moments of stress, you pull it together. The stress could be hard at times and it should not be diminished against anything else because you are feeling it. You have the right to feel it, and it is important to feel it. Sharing it here is an important part of your support network. Even if through a few lines only..we are here to read, and support you.