Saturday, July 26, 2014

Thoughts on Motherhood

I've been working on being a better mother lately.

I've often wondered what my children's first memories will be...and so I've been trying to be a mother that plays, a mother that listens, a mother who is more attentive, a mother who is more responsive.  I don't want my children's first memories to be of me frustrated with them or upset over something that they did.

My daughter currently has an ear infection and she needs to take antibiotics.  She hates taking the medicine and screams every time I try to give it to her.  It is a struggle every time.  Part of me wants to stop giving it to her because it makes her so upset, but I know that even though she hates it now, in the the long run it will hopefully make her feel better.  After the medicine is done I take Olivia in my arms and comfort her.  I don't like to see my children suffer but I know that certain things are for their good even though at the time it is uncomfortable or miserable.  It gives me an insight into our Heavenly Father's love.  He watches as we go through certain trials in our lives.  How grateful I am for His love and how much I still have to learn from Him.

My babies are growing up so fast. 

Malachi is in such a wonderful stage of toddler-hood.  He is talking (getting a new word almost every day), learning, exploring, imagining.  It is so fun to see his mind at work.  And I get to witness it every day.  I feel so blessed to be able to stay home with my children (even though finances are so tight).  I can't imagine having them in day care and missing all the new growth that happens every day (even though I know some families need to have children in day care...).  He loves music.  If we happen to have the television on and there is music, he will stop what he is doing to look and listen.  He doesn't care about the t.v. otherwise (which makes me happy!).  Oh, how I love him.

Olivia is in such a fun stage of babyhood.  She is starting to sit up on her own.  She is interested in everything(!) around her and wants to be involved with playing with Malachi, even though she still needs help.  She loves standing and will lock her knees if I try to have her sit when she doesn't want to.  Or she will stick her bum out, arch her back, and lock her knees so I can't have her sit.  She is constantly "talking" and grunting and my family thinks she is trying to go to the bathroom, which she isn't, she just likes making lots of noise.  If things are going on around her she wants to be involved.  She doesn't like being left out of anything.  She sleeps through the night, sometimes going 8 hours without eating.  The smiles!  Oh, how she smiles.   When she is happy she is really happy and when she is sad, watch out because she is really sad.  She will stick out her little lower lip in the cutest, saddest pout and cry.  Boy, can my girl cry! She also laughs!  Mostly she laughs at Malachi playing with her.  It is so cute.

All of this growth makes me realize how blessed I am to be their mother.  I (and Jesse) have the wonderful opportunity to be there to teach, nurture, discipline, and love.  I love them so much that some days it hurts and I don't even understand how I could even love them so deeply.  I watch them play and realize that I have the sacred responsibility of teaching them and raising them.  I'm afraid of failing them, of not being the mother that Heavenly Father wants me to be and my children need me to be.  I am very hard on my self sometimes when it comes to motherhood.  I often compare myself to other mothers and feel like I am lacking and not quite measuring up.  When both my babies are crying and both want to be held at the same time, but not together on my lap, I often lose my temper and get frustrated with them-- it is times like those that I feel lacking.  Like I disappoint my children.  I don't want them to remember me like that, so I strive to do better, to apologize when that happens. 

I pray so earnestly that I will live up to this sacred responsibility of motherhood. As I watch my children I often wish I could freeze time by scooping them up, running away, and never letting them grow up, but I know growth is part of the plan and so I try to do the best I can to make the most of the hands-on time I have been given with them.  "Time flies on wings on lightening" and all too soon, my children will be youth, teenagers, and then adults and my son and daughter will no longer be under my direct care.  I want to teach them and love them and help them grow. 
I know I will never be the "perfect" mother, but I hope with Heavenly Father's help I will be the best mother I can be for my children.  I hope my children know, despite my imperfectness as a mother, that I love them.  That at the end of the day, month, or year that I love them.  That I will never stop loving them.  That is my wish.

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