A Helmet and Some Grace.
Years ago my girlfriends and I had a tradition of getting together, watching The Hills (holler, team LC), and drinking the beverage of the week until the wee hours of the morning. It was our thing. I made a lot of memories, and learned a lot of lessons through those years, but one thing I'll always remember is LC, in her cute LC way - knocking on Audrina's head after a cry-fest, and saying "Life's tough, get a helmet." She meant it with love, and they giggled and hugged and bonded over some stupid boy that had hurt Audrina's heart that day. And at the time, I thought she was 100% right. I mean, it's pretty true - life is tough ... and a helmet probably would help in many situations. But through the years, I've learned that usually, grace is even more handy than a helmet.
However, sometimes I forget this. I forget helmets, and I forget grace, and I forget that I will be fine. It all goes out the window, and the world feels like it's on my shoulders, and that it's ending. (Is that possible? Could the world end while it's on my shoulders? What would be the best thing to do then? Toss it off and dust my hands? It sounds kind of freeing.. ha!)
Anyway, I think the main thing going through my heart at the moment is that we're still adjusting to "life with a kindergartener" ... and .. it's kinda tough. I mean, it's long, busy days, and a whole new world of "must-dos". We must: be here, go there, do this, return that, participate in that, help with this, be rested and ready to repeat. To get it all done in a day, it seems like the days have no extra time for snuggles, fun, rest, and just time to take a moment and enjoy our sweet family. And on top of all this - I'm trying to keep up with the norm -- house, work, being a wife, friend, sister, daughter, etc. (Oh yeah, and Dax is still alive and in the mix too.)
And lately, I've just been feeling like I haven't been doing a great job at any of it. I mean, I have friends that have twice as many, three times as many kids as I do! And then get it all done, and they rock it. How?! How can I not handle the simple things that come with two babies? I tell my husband and friends that I feel guilty no matter what I'm doing, because I'm not doing something else, and I just can't seem to get it all done. When asked what I need, I reply, "Oh, just more hours in the day." ..... Unless it was this morning, while packing a lunch and writing a love note for the 5-year-old who was already mad at me for something included in our morning routine, when my husband asked and I said, "It's 7:03am and I need a margarita!" Yes, my husband was being kind to offer ... and yes I was answering sarcastically yet honestly ... and yes I chose coffee instead of tequila. But then, a few quick hours later, I received a message from a sweet friend that included this blog: The Happy Mom Pledge -- and it couldn't have been more perfect.
I mean ... the first line is this --
I will know that I make a difference. And yes it counts when you get up early and pack those lunches and tuck notes in
Are you kidding me?! I mean .. it's like this Rachel-blogger-lady (and my friend) is in my house. How does she know that I sit here wondering if anything that I do is helping / working / worth it, when I write on those pink sticky notes each morning? How does she know I question my parenting ability each and every day, but that I do in fact, know where the missing shoe is 99% of the time? How does she know that I feel so lucky, and so loved, yet so undeserving of all that I have? How does she know that this list, including the part that it's ok to let the tears fall (thank you Rachel, they've been falling a lot lately, and I've been feeling guilty for that), and that I'm enough (thank you, dear Rachel, for that too!), is exactly what I need today? How does she know that? I'm not sure, but I'm thankful she does.
Back to LC and her helmet -- I find myself often thinking that I need to toughen up, get it done, deal with it. Which, is sometimes true. But I think it's a balance, of tough love and grace. And I think both are equally important. So, I'm taking The Happy Mom Pledge to heart today - I'm going to cut myself some slack, give myself some grace, and keep it real. And choose happy. I'm taking The Happy Mom Pledge today, are you?
And PS - If you're a mom / woman / friend / sister / daughter / wife / bosslady / entrepreneur / hustla .... hang in there! I feel ya ... that ish ain't easy!