Saturday, January 14, 2012

Parenthood

I just need to pour my heart out right now. You're in for a long read. It's okay if you want to just stop right here and wait for my next cheery post :) It's Saturday morning, Theo is about to embark on a 10 week journey in Virginia and I am feeling overwhelmed. At this exact moment, things are peaceful. But it's the calm after the storm. It has been an awful week. I mean, truly awful. In the grand scheme of things, of course it could always be MUCH worse. But in our little world, it's been pretty bad around here.

It all started Sunday when the stomach virus of 2012 kicked off. We all passed it around and fortunately, our kids are much more resillient than us adults are. When I'm sick, I mostly just want my momma. Then, when the fact that she's 1000 miles away hit me, I became so overwhelmingly lonely.

I love Colorado. I love the opportunity we've had here. But I am lonely. I am isolated. I am the lead actress in the movie, Groundhog Day, where my life is a series of the same repeated events every Monday through Friday. I know it can't be helped right now. Between Carter only going to school half of a day and Isaiah and Olivia very much needing their afternoon naps, I'm bound by a pretty rigid schedule. Which is mostly good, but it leaves little room for spontaneous fun or flexibility.  I can't join a MOPS group because I'd have to leave early every time to get Carter. I can't go to my Bible study any more because then the kids would miss lunch. I can't even hardly have playdates because Carter is either at school or the littlest ones are napping. All of this to say, it's basically me and my kids every minute of every day with very little adult company other than my husband. And try as he might, my sweet husband can't meet all of my needs.

I long for the support system I once had in Louisiana. My parents, my aunts, grandmother, brother, sister-in-law, neices and nephew, and all of the friends I had made over the course of a decade. I hate feeling like I am doing all of this all on my own. I know all of the wives in the same boat as me are doing it on their own too....far from home, with little support. I know I CAN do it, I just don't like doing it. I have one friend in the same city as me. Sure, we have lots of acquaintences, people who we invite to our parties, but only one person I talk to and see a few times a month. Fortunately, my couple of other closest friends and I have maintained our relationships by talking on the phone and keeping up with each other. It feels as if they are close by which helps but it's not the same as having them in my living room while I vent about motherhood :)

Which I have needed to do a lot this week. Our firstborn has been out of control. I don't feel like going into all the details but I haven't even recognized him this week. I have yelled at him and spanked him more the past week than I have in the past six months probably. When did I become a yeller? I don't ever remember yelling at him when he was younger and when it was just him and Livie, but now I raise my voice without thinking twice about it. I used to (and still often) cringe when I hear other mothers yelling at their kids. But now I am that mother. And I hate it.

I have been praying for God to give me a quiet and gentle spirit. But my kids don't seem to respond well to a meek momma. Or maybe they would respond better if I didn't interject my meekness with yelling all the time.  I just don't know what to do. This is so hard. Rewarding but hard. There is no one size fits all parent manual. Believe me, I've perused the library shelves enough to know this. But then a small voice fills my spirit, telling me "Let me shine through you. The only way you will ever be the kind of mother I've created you to be is to let go of yourself and let me shine through you." And maybe this is the end of my search for answers. How do I become a better mom? How do I become more patient? How do I love the unlovable? How do I make it through this challenging time? Painfully simple, yet seemingly impossible at the same time: Jesus. I can only do this with Him. I can do this for Him. I can do this because of Him. That is the only way I can survive this journey of parenthood.

3 comments:

Brandi and Adam Hart said...

Oh Jaime, my hearts aches for you. I can't imagine Adam being gone for that long. He left this morning for 3 days, and I already feel lonely. I will pray for you. Keep turning to God like you have been. He will provide for all your needs if you continue to ask. Hopefully next week will be a thousand times better!

The Shoemakers said...

You are a great mom and a strong woman. Sometimes I feel stuck in the work, school, kids schedule. I try to schedule a girls night out once every couple of months. It's the one time where I get to go into public with make-up on and no buggers or food on my clothes lol. I love and miss you and even though I'm far away we can always lock ourselves in a room and talk if you need to :)

Aunt Laney said...

Jaime, you are an amazing woman and mother. I know it will be hard while Theo is gone but you will get through it. God is faithful and He will support you. You know that I love you and I am always just a phone call away.