Monday, August 3, 2015

The #beingamother project

I came upon a Facebook page a couple days ago called Mommitment and looked around. It has a lot of positivity going on, and when I went to the website it supports I found out why. 

The Mommitment Movement is basically about moms supporting each other, and Talya at is working to get moms to stop shaming each other and be a helping hand to each other.

I like this idea. 
I like it a lot!

And she has a #beingamother project going, asking women what it means to them to be a mother.
So... being new to the blogosphere, I thought I'd weigh in with my thoughts.
And as I started thinking about those thoughts, about what being a mother means to me, I realized... I don't really know.  I've never really thought about it before.

Basically, I muddle through each day, making sure everyone has what they need, eats something, gets where they need to go, and doesn't kill each other. #lifewithteens
I never really gave it much thought as to what it means to be a mom... you just do what you have to do and make sure everyone knows they are loved.

I can tell you this, though... it's not as easy as I'd thought it would be!
Ya see... I grew up basically in a Leave It To Beaver home.
Daddy worked. Mom stayed home with the 3 of us kids..sometimes more. (young people were always coming and staying with us when they needed somewhere to live during trying times they might be having in their own homes.)
My mom took care of us and our home.
She made chore lists and daily menus. Packed our lunches, made sure we did our homework. 
Prayed over our tests and our friends.
Served us supper on the good china for our birthdays and report card days, and when we aced a big test.
We went to church every Sunday morning, Sunday evening, and Wednesday night.
We were in school clubs and went to football games, had slumber parties on a regular basis, and friends always wanted to hang out at our house.

I thought being a mom would be easy. 
My mom sure made it seem that way.

I graduated with honors from high school, went to a private college, got a degree, met a guy, got married, and had a family of my own.
Three kids.  
Just like my mom.

And then I realized.. it was NOT easy.
Kids were loud and messy and didn't sleep and were picky eaters.
And then a divorce happened when they were 3, 4, and 8, and I was sharing custody and moving miles and miles away from my own parents and father of my children and parenting alone while working .

Rules changed. 
We adapted.
  • No longer did I insist they eat a "good healthy breakfast". "Just eat SOMETHING.. I don't care what..but put something in your tummy and do it in the car because we are late. Again."
  • Just go to sleep! I don't care where! On the couch, in the floor... ok, you CAN get in bed with me, just go to sleep already!
  • Yes, you can wear those green shoes with that purple plaid shirt and orange shorts. Just get your clothes on!
  • No baby, I'm not hungry. Y'all share that Happy Meal between you. I will be fine.
And they grew. And were healthy, and usually happy (aside from the sibling bickering that I remember as being normal.) They've all done well in school. One will graduate college this next year, the other two will be a junior and a senior in high school.  No jail time for anyone, no car wrecks, no dating drama. They all have great friends and activities they participate in.

I guess I didn't screw them up, despite how many times I thought I was. 

Being a mom is hard work. Even when they have a good dad to help out. And grandparents, too. Even when I got remarried a few years ago and had an extra parent in the household.
I don't know how my own mother made it look so easy. She seemed to always have her act together. I know there were times when we (mostly I) gave her grief and made her unhappy, but she seemed to handle it all with finesse. 
I tend to just collapse at the end of each day and thank God that they are all still safe and healthy and not causing much trouble.  

It's a commitment.. we all know that. Caring more for someone else than we do ourself. Putting the wants and needs and well being of someone else before your own. Sacrificing and working longer hours to make sure your children have what they need, or can do things that they want to do.

But the end result is worth it. Seeing my now almost grown children doing so well in school, in life, and knowing they are of good character and are responsible and respectful people make all those hard times fade into the background.  
I am proud of who they are becoming... and proud of myself for helping them to achieve that.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Tummy Troubles: It's bigger than I want it to be.. but that's ok

Today it seems like every article I come across is talking about being fat.  But not in a bad way. Articles telling us it's ok to be bigger than the models we see in the ads.
Go Ahead and Stare at My Tummy

Articles like this one that show we are not alone.. that even famous people, the "pretty people", have done what is natural and decided to eat, and have gotten bigger.
To All the Mamas Still Trying to Lose that Baby Weight
(I think after 16 years I can give up on that!)

And even one woman stating what I've wanted to for years... that anyone over 20 should just give it up and realize they are too old to try and look like a teenager anymore!  
Should Women over 20 Wear a Bikini?

Now I have always been bigger.  Bigger than my friends in high school by 20 lbs or so. Never seen in a bikini. Not the cheerleader. Not the pretty girl. Always second fiddle.  Same for college. I got use to it.  
Oh I had boyfriends. I was one of those girls with a "great personality".  But when I'd go out with my friends to parties or social gatherings, I was never the one chosen first by the boys. I was the leftovers.  And I still had fun.

And as time went by, like most people do, I put on some weight. Three babies and 25 years later, I am quite a bit heavier than my college years. There's quite a bit more to me than I'd like there to be.
But it's still ok.
I'm ok with who I am. 
But in my mind I am a size 4...or maybe a 6, and I feel good 

about myself, until I look in a full length dressing room 

mirror or catch my reflection in a store window. I don't 

recognize that obese lady looking back at me. That cant be 

what I look  like! That can't be me. I'm not that big. I know, I 

know.. my jean size and 2X tags in my shirts would 

contradict me could they speak, but I don't FEEL that big. 

And then, for a little while, I worry what others think of me 

when they see me. Start worrying that maybe

I'm not as fabulous as I think I am. Maybe I'm the fat 

mom that my children's friends all laugh at as my big booty 

walks away from them. But then I get home and get busy 

and my husband reminds me how beautiful I am...big 

thighs/big boobs and all.

Now, I don't begrudge anyone the right to try and look the best they can. I'm not shaming those who work out and diet in an attempt to be that size 0 or 2.. if that's what it's going to take to make you happy.  
We definitely need to take care of ourselves and eat right and exercise for better health, so that no matter what size we are, we feel good and can do everything we want to with no limitations. 

I'm just saying that it's ok to be chunky. To eat pizza and tacos and chocolate cake. If you are a good person, a nice person, a respectful person, then others will like you no matter what size you are. And those that love you will love you no matter what.
At least that's what I keep telling myself as I try not to glance in the mirrors.