Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Set a Goal on Monday or Tuesday (Kim)

My friend Jody asked me if I was done setting a goal on Monday, because I haven't done it for a few weeks. I told her that no, I am not done with setting a goal on Monday, it is just that having 6 kids now is kicking my butt, and I haven't set a goal the last few weeks because that would just be one more thing I wouldn't be able to get done during the week. It usually takes me about 3 months after a baby is born to adjust to the changes, start to feel like myself again, and for us to get on a schedule of what works. So by my calculations I have about 5 more weeks of adjustment and chaos until things start to mellow out and to normalize. We shall see, maybe 6 is the magic number that turned me insane.
Well, my goal for the week is a little different than the goals I have previously set. I have been thinking a lot lately about the kind of mother I want to be and about the kind of family I want to have . Nothing makes me reflect on my life and the kind of person and mother that I am more than having a new baby. I think that since babies are just so innocent and wonderful it brings to mind all the hopes and dreams I have for my children and my role as their mother. A couple weeks ago I was reading a blog by Stephanie Neilson, the nienie dialogues, (my all time favorite blog to read) and she quoted a talk that I had heard given, but at the time it didn't affect me like it did when I read it on her blog. It was just what I needed right then and so I will quote her. She said: "Author Anna Quindlen reminds us not to rush past the fleeting moments.{or if I could enter here-the basket-head mother syndrome} She said: “The biggest mistake I made [as a parent] is the one that most of us make. . . . I did not live in the moment enough. This is particularly clear now that the moment is gone, captured only in photographs. There is one picture of [my three children] sitting in the grass on a quilt in the shadow of the swing set on a summer day, ages six, four, and one. And I wish I could remember what we ate, and what we talked about, and how they sounded, and how they looked when they slept that night. I wish I had not been in such a hurry to get on to the next thing: dinner, bath, book, bed. I wish I had treasured the doing a little more and the getting it done a little less”(Loud and Clear [2004], 10–11). (To read the entire talk she is quoting click here)

Stephanie then goes on to say, "Starting today I am going to be better. I never had a basket-head mother, and I AM NOT GOING TO BE A BASKET-HEAD MOTHER! I am going to listen, love, communicate, cherish, enjoy, teach, preach and prepare my children. Time for everything else later.

Part of the reason I think this affected me so much was that I was reading a post that her sister had re-posted for the blogging world to read one month after Stephanie was in a terrible small plane crash. She was burned over 80% of her body and at the time I was reading this post they didn't know if she was going to live or die. (She is doing better now click here) She wrote the original post 2 months before this accident, and it reminded me how precious our time with our children really is. We don't know what tomorrow will bring, and even if nothing serious happens, our time with our children is still so very short. They just grow up so fast.

I think I live my life just trying to get through. I don' t take the time for the little things that really matter because the laundry needs to be done and the dishes need to be done. I haven't been cherishing those little moments with my kids that will be gone all too soon. In the talk that Stephanie quotes above Elder Ballard also says that, "...the joy of motherhood comes in moments. There will be hard times and frustrating times. But amid the challenges, there are shining moments of joy and satisfaction." I have been looking for those moments lately and cherishing them, (in a big part because of Stephanie's blog. She is such a good example) and I have been surprised how my whole attitude has changed. I think I am truly starting to find the real joy in motherhood. It isn't about the glorious end when your children will one day be perfect and the house will be perfect. That day will never come. It's about finding the joy in the journey of everyday, and if you miss the joy in the everyday small things you have missed the joy with your children. I can never get those little things back again.

So my goal this week is to love my children more, play more, give more hugs and kisses, listen more, sing, dance and be crazy more, praise more, and to stop being a basket head mother.


Tate Family said...

What a great goal Kim. It's one that I need to be reminded of frequently. (Especially today!)
Thanks for all that you do!

Earle Family said...

Kim, that was beautiful! Thanks for posting. It is truly something we all should remember!

Dahlia said...

I love this post. I love Stephanie's blog. I love that I can strive to be a better mother and that I've got inspiring examples like you and her! Seriously, you're an awesome mother.