Monday, August 5, 2013

What kind of example am I setting?

Sometimes, especially in the thick of the post-vacation, "Gee, we're all terribly bored" rut, I wonder what kind of example I'm setting for my children, especially when I can't help but almost constantly think and often remark, "I'll be so glad when school starts."

What gets to me over the span of 2+ months of summer break is being without a routine, a structure for the day, and being with the same 3 humans all day long.  It's not anything specific about the kids that begins to wear on my nerves; I'd be sick and tired of being with my best friend or my husband or Jesus Christ if I had to be in their company constantly for weeks-long stretches.  The reverse of "Absence makes the heart grow fonder," would have to be "Togetherness makes the heart grow hostile."

I worry that I'm damaging the kids' psyches by my sometimes disgruntled stay-at-home mothering, but they will probably only remember 1 or 2 occasions when I was sub-par.  My own mother stayed at home with me and my brother for years until she began working part-time at our elementary school, and I only remember one occasion when dad walked in and she walked out to find some peace in the car or on a walk or wherever it was she went.

For all of our sakes, I hope their memories are as flawed as my own.

Recently in the car, N was talking about how many kids she wanted to have and what she wanted to name them.  Somehow the conversation turned to whether she wanted to stay at home in the future.  As much as I am glad I have been able to stay at home with my children, I understand in a way I didn't some 9 years ago how important it is to have outlets, either creative or professional (or in a perfect world---both without breaking the bank).

I took this opportunity with N to tell her that probably most moms would like a balance of being with their children and still being able to work part-time.  Though I've had volunteer involvement and freelance writing, it hasn't always been enough to sustain my soul adequately.

One of the things I am learning in this gig of motherhood is that I'm in the business of many things---nose- and butt-wiping, snack-retrieving, clothes cleaning---and the artful teaching of soul sustainment to my wards.

No comments: