Thursday, August 27, 2015

on middle school and letting go.

Last week I took Moses to middle school orientation. We walked the halls of the same middle school that I went to and his grandma before him attended.  But everything looked a little foggy and felt different than when I roamed the halls in 1991. That might be because I did the math and realized that was 24 years ago. 24! I came home and told Mark that a lot of the parents looked "old". He just laughed. Is this even reality!? 
I am too young to have a middle schooler.

Yesterday at 6:39 Moses climbed onto the bus for his first day of middle school. Mark and I saw him off and then sat on the bench of our porch and drank our cups of coffee and cried. We cried tears of joy because we are so proud of the young man he is becoming and the confidence he carries. In reality I was way more nervous about this whole middle school thing than he was. "I've got this mom" was his attitude. We cried because our son is growing up and venturing into new unknown territories. A lot of what was talked about at the middle school orientation was about gearing up for high school. I was just warming up to the whole middle school idea and now you keep talking about high school! What!! We cried over the reality that he is heading into a new season. And it it exactly what he is supposed to be doing. Growing up and going on new adventures away from us. It is the "away from us" part that is hard. 

Every summer I hit the end of July and want to throw in the towel because my kids are driving me crazy and every August I weep when it is back to school because I am going to miss them. Every new school year is a new letting go. It is a reminder that I am not in control. A reminder to trust and let them go experience and learn new things. 

So yesterday I cried and let go some more. And in the letting go I find fresh love for these five who have my heart.

and then there was just one. 
and eden never one to be left behind insisted that she pack her backpack and lunch too...just in case.
and look at this face. how could you say "no"!

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

it's okay.

I started out the summer strong. We had our bucket list hanging on the fridge. I was going to be the fun mom and we were going to make memories that would last a lifetime. I was ready.

Fast forward to last week and I hit a wall. I was tired of fighting children, noise and piles of laundry and dishes. I didn't want to make memories with anyone. I just wanted everyone to leave me alone. I did not want to take anyone to the pool or out for ice cream or do anything fun. Poor attitudes abounded including my own as much as I tried to "savor the moment"and "embrace chaos".  

This morning I took all five to Target. My sister is getting married and the girls needed shoes for the wedding. Simple? No. Surviving target close to lunch time is like an olympic sport and the older they get the more requests you have to fight off while trying to remember what the heck you even came into the store to buy in the first place. By the time we left I had full out broken into a mom sweat and was speaking to kids through clenched teeth. I stopped and bought myself an iced coffee as a reward simply because I had just survived Target with five kids. 

This mothering thing is tiring. 
Beautiful and rewarding but tiring

And its okay. 
Too often I put unrealistic expectations on myself to be super mom and super human. And it's okay that I feel tired and that five kids in summer can sometimes feel hard. And fighting children is normal as much as I hate it and feel like there is something wrong with them.
And...GRACE there is GRACE.

There is grace for me when I feel cranky. There is grace to not have the house look like how I would like it to all the time.. There is grace for the pre adolescent child with the mouthy voice. There is grace for the siblings who need to compete about everything and anything.  There is grace for children who misbehave in Target and whine in loud voices, "You never get me anything I want." There is grace for the garden that is full of weeds and produce that needs picked. There is grace for the three year old who is still not potty trained.

There is GRACE. Even when I don't feel it. There is. 

If you are feeling this way too you are not alone. 
Hang in there friend.