Ashes and Gold Statues

(Things to note down and elaborate on later.)

Flowers between the cracks

Broken vessels

Life from the ashes

Stained glass windows

Jars of clay

Seedling

Flower in rain

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Filed under Nonfiction, Writing Prompt

Why Am I A Stay-At-Home Mom?

Why did you decide to become a stay-at-home mom?

Sometimes that question comes at just the right moment. A gal asked this on a moms chat group I’m part of on Facebook.  I’ve never been able to answer it before, but this time the answer came right to me as I typed.  I’m so glad I finally have this in writing now.  It’s what I have been trying to straighten out for 2 years.

Lots and lots of reasons… The first one that comes to mind is: it’s hard for me personally to handle two demanding jobs at one time. I suspected this would be the case when I got pregnant, although I wasn’t sure, because who knows exactly what motherhood is really going to demand of you right out of the gates??? Besides that, the small business I was working for didn’t have a paid maternity leave option. So when I had my son, I went ahead and quit my job, knowing if I wanted to go back they would rehire me in a heartbeat. But–here come my reasons: 1) in those first few months with my son, it became very obvious to me that I would not cope well with working and trying to be a good mommy at the same time. I wouldn’t be able to give 100% at both jobs and so I would always feel like a failure at both. That wasn’t okay with me. 2) As I was realizing this, I was also realizing that it was much, much more important to me for my children to have one of their parents at home, being a parent 24/7, than for me to bring home a sliver of a paycheck that would basically just cover childcare anyway (and that’s a maybe! childcare is ridiculously expensive).

Those were the big reasons that clinched it for me. In addition to those: 3) My husband’s salary was enough to let me stay home. 4) That’s what he had hoped for anyway. And finally– 5) eventually I figured out that I way preferred being a mom to working out in the world anyway. I’m just better suited to it somehow. I didn’t know that before I became one, though.

🙂

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Sherlock: The Final Problem (HEAVY spoilers!)

It seems so silly to be journalling about a TV episode, especially one in a series that is so wildly popular (at least in my circle of friends).  But this episode in particular affected me very deeply.  That is to say, I’ve been depressed and/or crying most of the day.

There were two parts that got me the most.  The first one was where John is trying to shoot the chief in order to save the chief’s wife.  (Is that’s what he was?)   Out of all the tests, that was really the hardest one for me to watch.

The second part was where we learned that Eurus drowned Sherlock’s best friend.  He was only, like, 5.  Actually any scene with Eurus as a little girl was incredibly difficult to watch.  But the scene in particular with the little boy… I just wanted to go hug my little son (who was asleep, so I didn’t).

It was also hard to watch Eurus at the very end, when we caught just a glimpse of her utter, beyond-help brokennness.  Really sent home the point that severely mentally ill people are just that: severely mentally ill people.

All in all, watching that episode reminded me a lot of my last year or two of college where I read all those horrible books that were devastatingly tragic, dark, and hopeless.  I’m just glad I have the space to process Sherlock.  I didn’t have that luxury in college.

In hindsight, I probably should have just told my professors that I couldn’t handle it emotionally and couldn’t make those deadlines to finish the books, because it was just too much.  I wonder how my life would have been different if I had been able to do that.


This is not about the final episode, but I REALLY loved this quote from Sherlock in episode 2 of season 4.

“In saving my life she conferred a value on it. It is a currency I do not know how to spend.”

Just LOVE.  I can’t post it on Facebook because my MIL hasn’t seen season 4 yet.

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Filed under Nonfiction, Opinion, Reflective Writing

Comparison is the Thief of Joy: Motherhood

Comparison is the thief of joy, they say.  But when I only hear one side of things more often than other sides, I really do start to wonder if something might be wrong with me.

I have known so many women who say it was always their dream to be a mom.  Oftentimes they say this as an introduction to their story of infertility, or of singleness that seems permanent.  I’m glad I have friends who are willing to open their hearts to that level of transparency, and my heart hurts for them in their struggles.  But beyond that, I have a hard time processing this information.

I wish I could just ask these friends: What is that like?  To only ever dream of being a mom?  How is that the only thing you wished for in life?  Didn’t the idea ever scare you?  What is it like to long for and joyfully anticipate motherhood instead of facing it with fear and trepidation?

I’m expecting my 2nd boy.  A wanted, planned baby.  Our first was wanted and planned as well.  But I have nonetheless accepted motherhood the way you agree to do something because you know it will be good for you, even though you’re terrified of failure.  Motherhood isn’t something I have raced toward, with giddiness and expectancy.  It’s something I have reluctantly come to because I don’t know any other way to conquer a crippling fear of failure except to keep trying hard things.

And yet I still feel like I am missing the point.  It’s not working.  As I look forward to this new baby, I feel just as scared as I did the first time around.  Motherhood is not a path to Getting Ahead In Life.  The next baby will be different.

People tell me that it will be easier this time and I hope they are right, but I can’t know.  What if it’s just as hard?

The bottom line is, I need a different answer than just trying to gather up my strength and battle my fear of failure all over again.  This battle doesn’t end that way.  I just wish I knew the way to how it does end, because I am so tired of the hamster wheel.

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Filed under Essay, Nonfiction, Reflective Writing

Choosy

I’m choosy.

Very choosy.

About everything.

I’m very careful about anything I let influence me.

This is an interesting insight into myself that I haven’t really thought about before.  I mean, I always knew I was picky about food and that I don’t take risks in the online world.

But I’m also very choosy about my real friends, too.  And very choosy about who I add on Facebook.

I don’t think of myself as snobby so much as…careful.  Very, very careful.  I guess I’ve had my heart beat up too many times?

Huh.  This is just very interesting.  Yet another thing to unpack tonight.

#fullofthoughts

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Describe Yourself in 3 Fictional Characters

So there is this thing going around Facebook.  It was harder than I thought it would be, because I figured out that the characters I thought of first were actually characters I wish I were like, rather than characters that are really true to me.  So I did some extra thinking and came up with these 3.

3-fictional-characters

#1. Mandy from Julie Edwards’book by the same name.  It’s a wonderful story about an orphan girl who makes a secret garden out of loneliness.  Later she gets adopted.  But I can so relate to running away to create beauty somewhere in a secret place.

#2. Miss Honey from Matilda.  My husband originally said I should be Matilda, but I am waaaaaay more similar to Miss Honey!  I am quiet.  I don’t give my opinion readily, and if I do, it’s sometimes apologetically.  But I really love people and try to believe the best of them first.

#3. This is Elinor from Sense and Sensibility.  I love this movie.  Elinor holds her feelings so closely to her.  But in the end when she finally gets her dream, she is completely overcome with emotions, and I think she even STILL even tries to hide them.  That is me all over.

3-fictional-characters-i-wish-i-was

Now on to the girls I thought of that I wish I were more like!

#1. Sara Crewe from A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett.  She was actually the first person I thought of when thinking of characters I love.  I wish, wish, wish I could dream beauty into everything the way she does.

#2. Danielle from Ever After.  I wish I were as well-spoken and as confident as she is!

#2. Anastasia.  I actually like her for the same reason I like Danielle.  Strength, grace, dignity, and confidence just come naturally to her, even when she’s only Anya the Orphan.

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Don’t Push That Button

Sometimes in parenting there are times when you want to laugh and cry at exactly the same time.
Today I put my Pandora DC Talk station on our TV because it was just too quiet and I needed some feel-good music to listen to. I went across the kitchen to the laundry room to put in a load while Micah played in the living room. I can hear “Into Jesus” playing quietly, when suddenly…
I mean DEAFENING. Shake-the-walls loud. Call-the-cops loud.
I go flying across the kitchen, scared out of my skin and prepared to give Micah a fiery reprimand after I turn off the speakers, when I recognize the shrill scream of my son in the middle of the deafening music, and he comes bolting straight toward ME, crying and flailing and just a picture of abject terror.
He had turned the volume knob on the amplifier ALL the way up and then hit the power button.
I just gather him up in my arms and hit the power button. Then we sit in the leather chair and my heart can’t make up its mind whether to laugh or cry, but mostly I laugh. And hold my poor traumatized son as he clings to me for dear life. He cried like that for a long time.  When he finally started to calm down, I said to him very calmly and quietly, to reinforce what I’ve said to him many, many times: “Don’t push that button.”
Lesson learned, I guess?

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