Friday, July 22, 2011

Becoming a Mother

Tonight I am sitting at home with Makayla trying to rest and do nothing (because I promised my mother-in-law that I would) while Cory, his mom, and Hailey are cheering Kateund and Cloey on at their final swim meet for the summer. I hate the fact that I am not there cheering for them, but at the same time, there is no way that I am ready to take my week old baby out into the crazy heat and humidity of a 6 hour outdoor swim meet. My house has been peaceful and quiet ever since 3:30 this afternoon. The first 20 minutes were wonderful. I laid Hailey down on my chest and actually picked up a book. But then after those 20 minutes, the house suddenly got way too quiet. I always think about how nice it would be to have some alone time but then once those 20 minutes are up, I'm over it and ready to be back in the thick of things. It's just how it is. I sometimes wonder what I used to do before I was a mom. Cory and I were married for about three years before Katelund came along. We traveled a lot and have some fun memories but my purpose and mission in life was definitely not fulfilled until I became a mother.

Last night (I guess it was actually early this morning) I was up feeding Makayla at about 2:30. As I sleepily gazed at her beautiful face, I thought about how much I love being a mother. I usually just feed her, put her back in her bassinet, and fall back into my own bed for a couple more hours, but this time I didn't. I got up and checked on all of my other sleeping babies. I went to the cupboard and got out some Vicks to put on Katelund's chest to help her sleep without coughing. I checked on Cloey and pulled blankets back up. I listened to Hailey to make sure she was breathing okay, then I heated up a rice pack to place on Cory's aching back (he had strained a muscle in it earlier in the week). Then I laid back in my bed and just soaked in the feelings of peace and contentment.

Yes, motherhood is full of ups and downs, worry, exhaustion, monotony, etc, but somehow the moments of joy seem to surpass them all. When I look back over the eight years that I have been a mother, the hard times, when I thought I just couldn't do it any longer, seem to fade into the recesses of my mind as the moments of joy and fulfillment break through to the front. It is the feeling of contentment, the feeling of knowing that I am doing what I was born to do, that gets me through the tough times. So although my incision is still stinging every single time I use any of my ab muscles, my tears start overflowing without a moment's notice, and my body...(oh the joys of a postpardom body) which is so not the same as it was eight years ago), I am trying to soak in every minute of this precious time because I know that in a blink of an eye it will be over because, unfortunately, the clock of life never stops.

The longer the clock of motherhood ticks in my life, the more I am discovering the importance of taking time to just soak in the moments. To enjoy each stage of life and start over each day with a greater determination to do better. Although I became a mother eight years ago, I don't think that my process of becoming is over or complete. I believe it is a life-long process. One that will help smooth out all those places where I am so rough and one that will lead me to the person and mother I was born to be.


Carrie said...

What a great post. It is a learning process every day when you are a mother. Those quiet moments when you can reflect and count your blessings are amazing. You are a great mom Melissa. Your girls and Corey are so lucky to have you. :)

Rebecca said...

I love this post. I have had similar thoughts when up in the night too. Also, I love how you already mistakenly called Makayla Hailey. I think I have called all my new boys by the previous boys name several times!

Melanie Anne said...

What beautiful thoughts! I have been thinking alot lately about how fast the clock of life is tacking:) I too love being a aMOther and i can not believe how fast it is going! Sometimes, I really miss my babies--when they were sweet little bundles like Makayla. They grow so fast! Thanks for the reminder and wonderful example of Motherhood- LOVE you Melissa!

Mandy said...

OH, I agree with you completely. Isn't it the greatest gift be a mother?

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