Thursday, January 27, 2005

Mothering isn't for Wimps

Yesterday I yelled at my son. The kind of yell where my throat still hurts. I am still sad. Yes, he was being difficult. Yes, he was being a pest. Yes, I was at the end of my patience, obviously. But, No, he didn't deserve it.

He was just being himself.

And -- this is where the trouble began -- I was just being myself. My self-ish self.

My son is a talker. A noise maker. A very verbal being who NEEDS interaction like I need silence. Yesterday, apparantly, I didn't want to be needed. But, that's not really my choice anymore, is it? We are such opposites, he and I. And most days, home alone together. The afternoons are sometimes very long.

At the root of my impatience with him is guilt. Guilt that eats away at me for not being a more creative, loving, selfless mother. And regret. Regret that I ever allowed him to watch TV, that I don't pray more, read to him more, seek activities that will stimulate his amazing brain more.

Pursuing my own interests & needs above his sometimes is what keeps me sane. But, doing so also makes me wonder what it is costing him. And us. What he will remember from these fleeting days. What I will remember.

Truth is, kidstuff bores me. His endless stories seem like nonsense to me. His running noise an assault on my senses. Someday, and soon, he'll prefer his friends to us. I know this. And, I don't blame him.

I know he'll not always be around. Knowing this doesn't change my need for solitude, time, quiet. But, it should change my attitude. It hasn't, really. Sometimes, though, he does.

When he climbs in bed with me in the morning to snuggle and hold my hand, I am reassured that he knows he is loved. That he believes me when I tell him I am proud of him. That he is affirmed, deep inside, that we love him for who he is.

He's a funny kid. An entertainer, a leader, a smart and witty boy who is learning to negotiate life and build friendships. He knows how to laugh and make others laugh. He's resiliant. I'm starting to see that he is a peacemaker at heart.

I still have so much to learn about myself, especially about being a mother. Guess I couldn't do it without him.

Friday, January 21, 2005

Strange Dreams ...

A couple strange dreams last night. One was about a meeting. Another about a horserace.

The meeting dream: I approached my seat in a room filled with familiar people (church, maybe?) and sat next to a friend I knew but didn’t recognize. The meeting moderator began going over the agenda, warning us not to use the word "camel" explaining that it had become a sacred word, and no longer politically correct to speak in public. The substitute word, she explained further, was "kaedra" and announced that I would be the one to listen for offenders. She then explained that I was the most qualified in the group for this task based on my track record as a writer. (okay, whatever. It's a dream, remember...)

Next thing I knew, I was delivering a speech about why I write. I began by relaying how, when I was fifteen, someone told me I had a way with words. I continued on about following my heart, praying and looking for opportunities to do what it is I was meant to do.

The weird part is that everyone was at rapt attention, even while the whole time I was trying unsuccessfully to screw a lid onto a travel mug that had been placed at each of our spots.

Then, out of nowhere a young woman asked “Can you begin a sentence with the word ‘T’was’?”

I said: “T’was quite unfortunate that these mugs, which I’m sure we paid for, were improperly made.”

The horserace dream ended with me quizzing my son about why, when he approached the pack racing toward the finish, he dropped the reins and let the horse fall back. I knew he would have won if he’d just kept going. He wouldn’t answer me. When I woke up, I recognized it was actually me on the horse - afraid of getting hurt by pushing through to the finish line.

Then I woke up.

This morning, the first thing I read in my email was today’s post from Infuze (an online publication at Couldn’t have been more relevant.

I Dare You to Move, indeed.

Thursday, January 20, 2005

Doubt creeps in ...

It must happen slowly and while I'm not paying attention, because suddenly one day, I'll wonder what in the world am I doing? Writing a book? Yeah, right. I'd better get a real job, or go back to my previous one, because this just isn't going to pan out.

Then, I visit a bookstore, flip through a few pages of a random title, or even one that's been recommended and right there in front of me is junk. Something I could easily do better -- and I realize its not ability or desire that's keeping me back. It's fear. Plain old fear. The same fear that has held me from achieving my goals in other vocations.

This time, though, I'm determined to conquer it. With God's help, personal perserverance and time, I will succeed.

Just keep writing. Just keep writing. Just keep writing...

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

That's the Molokini Atoll, off Maui, in the background. Eli spotted an eel for the whole boatload of snorkelers. Posted by Hello