I am a mom.

Recently I heard myself talking with a friend and telling them how I never wanted kids. Truthfully they were the last thing on my mind when I was younger.  I enjoyed babysitting and that was it.  Not once do I remember thinking “man, I wish this was my real child” or “boy I cant wait to have kids and do these things with my own babies.”  Nope.  I wanted to get married and BE loved by that man and grow old together… but for some reason the only children I envisioned for my life were my students.(I also dreamed to become an English teacher)

So anyway, to say the least when I found out I was pregnant with Kaelob fear set in.  I didnt know how to be a mom… I didnt think I was prepared for that responsibility.  I remember holding him in my arms as a newborn precious baby and spending hours starting at his perfect little face.  I was amazed and in awe of him but somewhere I was still disconnected. It was a baby… I didnt know what to do with a baby…

As time passed I adjusted and began to connect with him and I learned to be an awesome mother.  I got a routine down and he followed suit right away.  He was a laid back easy going baby and made my job as a new mother so amazingly simple I feel guilty taking credit.

When haylee came around I was quickly overwhelmed with trying to split myself between two children and a husband… oh yeah and friends lol.  it drains you physically emotionally and spiritually; to try and maintain all these aspects of your life when also trying to adjust to adding a new baby to your family.  Here I was again with a newborn wrinkly little thing… but this time I looked at her and had a connection, a warmth and a sense of peace.  I knew how to deal with babies I thought… I thought wrong. She faught me every step of the way…

She hated bottles, she didnt sleep on any kind of routine for the longest time.  She didnt crawl or talk for the longest time, but when she finally did we couldnt get her to stop. She was her own individual personality and that in itself was A LOT to adjust to…

THEN more recently we had our second daughter. A true princess of peace considering she seems to have brought peace to our family. she has fit in perfectly; the easiest of the three to adjust to.

Although Peytne had her own way of doing things, she settled into the routine of our family wonderfully and even more so Kaelob and Haylee adjusted to welcoming their baby sister just as beautifully.  Kaelob suddenly developed into this slightly distant but amazingly protective big brother. He was very observant and specific when anything wasnt right or we did anything different with her and was quick to tell us he didnt like that or show his concern if he felt something wasnt right and we didnt know about it.  He was so protective and yet stayed a good distance away lol.  I can count the times he held her in his lap on one hand, yet he made up for that in time he spent talking sweet to her and cooing at her in hopes of getting a smile from her.  Although he never wanted to snuggle and hold her it was obvious he loved her.  Haylee on the other hand wanted to hold her ALL the time.  She held the bottles, changed her diaper, picked out her clothes, instructed any and all visitors to be careful not to hurt her baby sister… she was instantly and almost overwhelmingly a “little mommy”.  Although i had a crib set up in Haylee’s room we chose to use a pack n play in our master bedroom until Peytne slept longer during the night or was adjusted into a routine… however, Haylee was very clear that she did not agree with my plan.  The very first night we were home from the hospital she came into my room while I was rocking Petyne, crawled up on my lap and quietly discussed with me the reasons why she felt her baby sister should sleep in her room with her.  I will always remember her sweet voice telling me, “It’s okay mommy, she wont wake me up. I want my baby sister in my room with me. its our room now.”

So basically, the adjustment from two kids to three went beautifully… however I still found msyelf telling people I was never “that” person… that despite having three children it was never something I imagined for myself.  I almost looked at the title of being “mom” or a “stay at home mom” as a low status and it embarassed me. ALthough there are days I feel rewarded by what I have done with my life or am proud of the type of mother I have become… there are still many more moments that I shrug it off and say to myself, “you were never the mom type” basically resulting in the idea that I am not cut out for this. I look at my life and think I am insaine… why am I surrounded by diapers bottles ballet classes school report cards laundry dishes …. when did this happen?? HOW did this happen?? oh boy…  I panic and feel overwhelmed and stressed and thats when I hear “this isnt you.  you arent cut out for this. WHAT are you doing?”

what evil thoughts right? In my weakness all those times I loved and snuggled my babies knowing exactly what to do for them when they couldnt tell me what was wrong, all those times I packed up the diaper bag knowing exactly what i was going to need for all those unexpected mishaps that occur when taking three children out and about for a day, organizing and keeping track of a calendar of events, classes and parties that go along with children in school… feeding a family of five healthy well planned meals, maintaining a firm set of rules and consequences for behavior and ATTITUDES… and being confident enough to not back down despite the drama that may ensue… of course ALL of that and more takes talent, natural talent that can not be learned or obtained from any outside source…its within you…. its within ME.  but in those moments when I look around and i see laundry on the couch and chair, dishes all over the kitchen (and i mean ALL over the kitchen) food on the floor, a table full of junk mail and art supplies…the overwhleming list of upcoming activities…. I am buried in the insecurity that I am not good enough and why am I not good enough? Must be because I am not cut out to be a mom.

seriously? yep.  But the truth of the matter is that I am begining to realize we all have moments where we feel like this and let me tell you… being on the other side of the country from your babies definitely puts into perspective how much of a mom is in you.  I think I had this odd idea that once over here in Florida I would immediately revert to who I was when I was younger. I spent more time wondering what fun thing we could go do next, what new thing was cool in the media, what fun outfit to wear, where to go what to do…. no concern for bottles, diapers or childcare….I thought it would be so simple for me to shrug off the “mom” side of me because that wasnt “who I was”… funny thing is, thats not what happened.

even moments after getting dropped off at the airport in San Diego i almost burst into tears with the thought of leaving my 1yr old behind.   Of course in the hands of Daddy and Mema shes perfectly happy and certainly in good hands, but the thought of not being there if she wakes up crying or if she is crying for me and doesnt understand where I am; breaks my heart.

Then as I waited throughout the airport in SD and in Dallas for my connecting flight I found myself gravitating toward the seats closest to someone with a baby and watching the families with children.  Even during my first flight I spent a good amount of time talking with the gentleman next to me about children, homeschooling and marriage (he and his wife have been married 28 happy years)… slowly it started sinking in that maybe…just maybe, this IS who I am. and even better who I am meant to be.

In the quiet moments (which I have had more than I can count in the little time that I have been here) I catch myself thinking I’ve got to get this ready or take care of so and so…but nope, no I don’t.  I am child free and all I can seem to think about it my children. Funny how that happens right?

Well in this epiphany I have realized that I dont need to have had an amazing mother figure in my life to ingrain in me that natural motherly gene so that I embrace motherhood with welcoming arms and end up one of those perfect happy go lucky stay at home moms that LOVE every day of being a parent…do those even really exist?  Anyway just because you find yourself overwhelmed at times with being a parent does not mean that you are not an amazing mother.  The fact that even away from my children every part of me wants nothing more than to be with them again and that in the moments where I should take advantage of being able to relax and not worry about when to pick up so and so or who needs to go down for a nap I am still thinking about it… I can no longer tell myself “you arent cut out to be a mom.”

In the days to come I will knowingly struggle with being able to set aside my worries and thoughts of my kids, trusting and believing that yes they are okay and I will be home soon to hug and kiss them repeatedly, but until then I will enjoy the adult time with the most amazing best friend in the world and celebrate a wonderful wedding day down in the beautifully tropical Key West, Florida.

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