Sunday, April 17, 2011

Something I Didn't Expect

We have been in Texas for 3 days now. We are only going to be here for another day, and then we will begin our long trek home.

As I was planning this trip with my friend, my anticipation for the trip grew. The excitement mounted, and I could hardly wait for this past Wednesday to come.

I found myself excited to see parts of the country that I haven't seen in a long time. I was excited for the adventure of traveling with 4 small children. I was excited to purchase the food that we needed, pack the books and games, and organize our suitcase.

I was looking forward to spending time with my friend as well as my children in a new place with new scenery and new people.

But what I wasn't expecting was to really enjoy my children as much as I have. (Hear me out- I know that sounds really bad.)

Lately, I have found myself in a funk. I've struggled with the mundane tasks that are involved in the of raising 2 small children, running a household, and being pregnant again. I've been tired, stressed, sick (can we say morning sickness?!) and frustrated. To be quite blunt, I've not been simply enjoying my children's presence- they have become a chore, a source of frustration and exhaustion.

I know that sounds horrible...Right?

But this trip has brought something new to me. A more simple way of looking at my children. Watching them play, cooperate with other children, and adjust to new settings away from home has brought about a new perspective for me.

I have been laughing again. Laughing at the silly things they do or say. Laughing at the simple games that entertain them for hours, and the joy and excitement that they express when they experience something new.  I've been letting them get dirty (and I mean REALLY dirty). I've not been worried about telling them no to every little thing, or getting frustrated when they ask why.

I've had to slow down on this trip. I've had to adjust my attitude towards them, realizing once again what blessings they are in my life. (Besides from God, if it weren't for Caleb and Hannah, I'm not sure if I would have had the will to continue on after Joshua died. )

I'm thinking about some changes that I can make when I get home. Less TV time, less video games and computer time. More play and quality time. More freedom to just let them be kids and to not make them grow up too quickly. Less treating them like they are a chore, and more patience and understanding.

I expected to have fun on this trip, but I never expected it to be this good for me.




6 comments:

Amy said...

"More freedom to just let them be kids and to not make them grow up too quickly. Less treating them like they are a chore, and more patience and understanding."

I love, love, love this!!! Sometimes it's too easy to place such high expectations on our children. We expect them to be good, to understand everything, to learn algebra, to eat their vegetables, to wash their faces & hands 15 times a day, to stay out of our way as we cook/clean/shower/iron/vaccuum/dust/etc.... All this before the age of 3. We all do it.

But what a nice relief it is to take a break from all those expectations and just let 'em have at it sometimes. I'm so glad you're enjoying your trip!!

Mandie Hamrick said...

"I'm thinking about some changes that I can make when I get home. Less TV time, less video games and computer time. More play and quality time. More freedom to just let them be kids and to not make them grow up too quickly. Less treating them like they are a chore, and more patience and understanding."

The fact that you are learning that now proves that you are an AMAZING mother! I'm so happy that you got the chance to go on that trip. So many times we (as mothers or just as parents in general) get caught up with the every day, mundane things. With me, I get caught up in the expectations of what I think my children should be or act. I forget that kids need to be kids, and getting dirty or talking all the time is how kids learn and become different. God's working in you, and I can "see" that even through your amazing writing ability.
I'm praying for a safe and uneventful trip back home. You should stop by Springfield, IL on your way. ;) I'm not that far away from there.

The Great Mooski said...

SO glad you're having a blast! I hate that we won't see each other, but you will just have to come back down again sometime later :-).

Safe journey!

Amy

Jessica said...

so glad you are having a great trip!! Blessings and safe travels as your travel home this week!

brooke said...

Great insight.

Angela said...

Awesome post with great insight. An eyeopener. Thank you.

 
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