Thursday, September 9, 2010

In Awe

I stand in awe at the women who've gone before me, of the mothers who've sacrificed selflessly and cheerfully while raising up children who turn out to be successful, righteous adults.

How did they do it?

Did they cry all the tears that I cry when I can't get my little ones to stay in bed at night? Did they cheerfully wipe away the huge puddle of milk, splattered across the entire kitchen floor for the third time that day or did they do that through their tears too, like I do?

Did they force themselves off the couch after a long day of fighting nausea to make dinner for children who whine that they are hungry all day but then refuse to even taste the meal prepared?

Did they do all that with a smile?

Because I am miserably failing at the whole cheerful and smiling part of motherhood.

Yes, failing miserably.

To the point where, when I smile or laugh at something, my kids look alarmed and ask if I'm in a good mood.

Isn't that sad?

I really don't know how to do all of this cheerfully on a regular basis.

Life is a lot harder than I was ever led to believe it was. I think I'm really struggling with the reality of that.

Anyway, those mothers who seem to do all that is required of them cheerfully, I bow down to you.


Spring said...

No, I frequently don't do all those things with a smile on my face. I think we all struggle with that, to varying degrees. I pray every day that I will be patient and gentle with my children, because I struggle with that. Some people seem to be able to find more happiness in motherhood than I do. Not that I'm not happy, it's just hard some days. In the church, too, I think the YW tend to really push the idea that you marry a returned missionary in the temple and live happily ever after. The reality of having to work at happily ever after isn't the topic of many lessons until after you get married. It can hit pretty hard when you find out it's not all sunshine and happiness to be married and have small children, when we're taught our whole lives that this is the ultimate happiness. Being married and having children is wonderful, but it is hard work. I wish that could be discussed more with the youth. I know a lot of people that feel that life is harder than they were led to believe it would be! It's also 10 times harder when you are pregnant and sick!

swedemom said...

I confess to having shed many tears over the difficulties and challenges of being a mother to 5 young children. Life is hard, really hard.

But I have determined to be more cheerful about my life since I chose it. I'm not a captive to it at all. I want to model motherhood in a way that shows my children that they can find happiness in whatever circumstances they find themselves.

I also like to think about my life in eternal terms in that the messes aren't eternal, the sleepless nights will end, and eventually I'll figure out those tricky things that drive me crazy. Because those things don't last forever, and my relationships do, it helps me find perspective.

Not that I always do. I lost my temper today in a pretty spectacularly bad way with my oldest. I'm just grateful for the atonement. So I pick myself up, repent and try to do better tomorrow or even the next minute.

Hugs to you.

Royalbird said...

I just think it's hard sometimes to keep an eternal perspective amidst the day-to-day frustrations of parenting. And I am glad for the chance to always try to do better.


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