Category Archives: Just Be Enough

Damn Dog

Hubby did bedtime routine last night while I moderated #ppdchat on twitter and then did a conference call for work with collegues in China.  They all headed to bed.  It was late and dark.  Almost quiet in the house.  And the doorbell rang. 

My heart skipped a couple beats.  I hoped hubby would come downstairs to answer it, but then was pretty sure he couldn’t hear the doorbell.  What to do.

I prayed it wasn’t a polite robber or mass murderer wanting in my house as I walked to the door.  I opened the door…and saw a shadow of a guy holding my dog. 

“Damn dog!”  Yup, those were the first words out of my mouth.  That was the second time yesterday a neighbor had returned the little escaping houdini dog.  Grrr….

Ha ha ha. “Yeah, I was taking out my garbage and I heard this rustling noise.  Kind of scared me.”

Would have scared me to bits, but thankfully this guy was a little less timid than I, found the source of the noise to be my dog and returned him.  I thanked him and went back to the safety of my kitchen.  Hubby came down toward the end of this and got my version of the story.

I even admitted the “damn dog” greeting.  Hubby was nice enough to add, “Oh yeah, Jesus saves.”  Yes, He truly does and I believe that with all my heart. 

Now here’s the question.  Did I ruin my witness to this guy with my dog comment?  Or, more to the point, when I am at work and that word escapes, do I ruin my witness there?  Does that negate all else I may say about God, Jesus and the Church?  Does it damage what I may say or does it make me more real, more approachable?

I’m not perfect, but I do work on my language.  I work on not saying everything that pops into my head.  And I succeed in not saying a lot!  Trust me.  But other things…

What say you?  How has your language changed since having kids?  Better or worse?  How is the internal monologue?  Better or worse?  What does mild swearing do to someone’s witness?  Do I need to eradicate it all or is it okay to Just Be Enough here?

Also, did you see my guest post yesterday?  Please head over to Sometimes It’s Hard to check it out, browse and enjoy other great pieces of writing there!

Also linking this with Thought Provoking Thursday

A Whole New Realm–Homework

As I mentioned, our oldest, Caitlyn started kindergarten this year.  That has brought lots of new things.  This weekend it brought…homework.

The teacher provided brown and green construction paper for us to make a family tree.  Daddy commented, when he saw the information for the project, Caitlyn, you have a big family, your tree will be very full.  Our girls have lots of aunts and uncles and cousins.  Lots.

But we had limited room.  The base of the tree was tracing her arm from elbow, up and around her open fingers to make the limbs.  We did that, then I sent her out to get a leaf we could use to trace to make ours.

I think the ones we made look like oversized sperm, but the jury was split on this.

I had Caitlyn help me with tracing and cutting.  She did not do all of it, but she did at least half.  I wrote the family names on the leaves. (I only went to the aunt and uncle level) She did all the gluing, and loved it.   And we talked about who was on each leaf, as she will have to present about it at school this week.

The whole time I stressed.  Was I having her do enough?  Too much?  Should we make it fancier? 

And I sent this tweet part way through:

“I am headed down a slippery slope. I’m looking at daughter’s homework and realizing it is not going to be as good as the work other ppl do.”

I was, sadly, not clear in what I was trying to communicate.  My doubts and struggles are not with her work.  I know she definitely at, if not above, her grade level in her arts and crafts skills.  My concern was with me.  Was I having her do enought, too much?  Would other parents do more of the work so she would feel like hers was not as good? 

Honestly, I still don’t know.  Hubby had some questions about it today when he saw it.  He’s concerned she might not be able to talk about it.  This could completely stress me out.  I want to help Caitlyn get off on the right foot.  I want to do this parent-of-a-school-age child gig, perfectly, but I don’t know what that is, so we will all have to learn together.  And in the learning, we will Just Be Enough.

I am linking this post with Just Be Enough.

Just a Couple Days Ago…

 This was just a couple days ago, right?  It was just a couple days ago we had our first daughter, right?

 Our first bloody peek?  Tell me it was, please tell me it was just a few days ago…
No, you won’t comfort this mama with a lie?  You’re going to make me face it, face the truth that a few days ago we did this…

 We headed to our first day of Kindergarten on Tuesday, September 6…

 Honest to goodness…my first baby went to Kindergarten this week…

Look at her.  Isn’t she amazing?  She is doing so well in school.  She is learning the ropes.  She is coming home with new ideas every day.  She is making new friends.  Today she told me, “I made 4 new friends.”  “What are their names?”  “I don’t know.”  Ahhh, this might be why childhood seems simpler, no concern with the extra details, like names. 

This has been a challenging week for mama.  Today, for the first time Caitlyn cried when I dropped her off for school.  Sobbed really.  Sobbed til there was snot running down her nose.  I know, I know, she was done before I even got out of the school, but it was still hard.  I realized that for the first time in her life, since those pictures taken above, that I could not check on her to make sure she was okay.  She was in a completely different world…one I can’t shape or control. 

Since the moment those pictures above were taken, I have been haunted by the thought that my job, from that moment, was to raise her to leave me.  From that moment, the midwife and nurses needed her, her daddy could now share in her.  I cried daily for the first 5 months of her life that she was growing up so much.  Hey, I did, just being honest here.  Before I even went back to work, I hyperventilated in Target because my baby was growing up.  Yeah, I’m kind of a sap.

Well, this week was the first time I really had to let her out of my control.  We have always chosen our daycare very carefully so that we would have as much control as possible.  And minimized the time our kids were away from us, but now, we are in a new realm.  Someone else has decided how much of the day she is away from us, they are teaching her new things, and while we are involved, we are more support staff. 

I’m not sure I like it, well I’m pretty sure I don’t.  But at the same time, I like watching her learn.  I love seeing her come home excited over the new things she is seeing and doing.  I loved seeing her owl picture she colored on the first day.  And the book she colored and put together today.  And the air of independence she is getting.  It is amazing.

So, as I have been many times since that first picture was taken, I am a conflicted ball of thoughts and feelings.  And while it’s not exactly comfortable, it is where we are, so, for now, it will have to be Enough.

My Mother of the Year Acceptance Speech

I did something today that required me to step outside of my comfort zone, all for the fun of telling my daughter yes when I would normally give her an excusue to not do something. I believe this earns me the Mother of the Year Award. So here is my acceptance speech.

“Thank you, thank you, thank you. You are all too kind to bestow me with the Mother of the Year Award. I am so honored.”

“Why yes, I will admit, I do deserve it. I told you, my children, yes today when my inclination was to say no. I took you running with me when I really wanted to be alone. I cleaned up your room for you so you and your friend could play. I took you to the bathroom today twice, when I would have rathered finish my adult conversation without interruption.”

“Oh and yesterday was a red letter day too. I had you help me make a pie when I could have done it myself in half the time. I laughed when you covered yourself in flour instead of yelling at you for making a mess. I let you practice cutting with scissors instead of giving into my fear that you would cut yourself.”

“I took you, my oldest, school shopping when I would rather keep you home with me; keep you protected my child. I smiled as we picked the lunch bags, glue, pencils, and crayons that you will take with you when you venture far outside of my influence. I smiled when my heart was crying and raging against this new phase in your life.”

“Yes, I deserve the Mother of the Year Award. Not for my perfection, but for my mothering outside of my comfort zone for your betterment, for your benefit. I deserve it for loving you enough to put your desires and needs above my preferences, above what I desire.”

“And while there is no physical award for me to hold onto, I will hold on to the moments when you whisper ‘I love you’ or come to me for comfort. I will cherish those times you still need me. I will revel in seeing you learn and grow even when my heart aches for the baby you used to be. And my greatest reward will be when you spread your wings and embark on your life.”

“But for now, my children, please forgive your mama when she falls short, or struggles to rise above herself for your good, or when her desire to keep you safe in her arms wins for a moment. Please love your mama anyway and believe her when she tells you she loves you more than any award in the world.”

“You are my treasure. You are my Award.”

I’ve linked up with Just Be Enough, where my link helps donate a memory book to those battling cancer.