I just want to STOP time!

Just 3 weeks.  That’s all I have left…

That thought doesn’t turn me into a sobbing mess, as you’d probably expect.  NO – it just makes my heart race, my palms sweat and my head spin.  I feel like I’m having a panic attack.  Like there is an impending doom that I can’t escape.  Like a huge black cloud hanging over my head and no matter which way I turn, it follows me.

I try to get lost in the busyness of preparing for my first born’s departure for college.  I try to get lost in living in the here and now, the present moment.  I try to get lost!  But no matter what I do, the 24 hours in each day seems to be speeding up.  The faster they go, the more constricted my throat feels, like I can’t breath and I’m going to vomit all at the same time.

There is so much in my life that I CAN control, influence, or manage…..

But when it comes to the ticking of time, I am at its mercy.

This is it.  Just 3 weeks until D-day (drop off day).  I’ve tried to prepare myself for this day.  But how can one prepare themselves for a total and complete life change unlike anything they’ve ever experienced.  I often wonder if the “thinking about it” part is worse than just doing it, and getting it over with?

I don’t need my children to define who I am.  And yet…..for 18 years I have been Ben’s mom.  His cheerleader, voice of reason and life teacher all in one.  I’ve been his Mommy, Mom, and Ma.  I’ve been there when he needed me, when he wanted me and when he wished I lived in a different house (or state).  In 3 weeks I will wake up and while my title will not have changed, my role will.  I don’t know how to parent from a distance.  I don’t know how to do this and I’m terrified that I will fail miserably!

A dear friend gave me a piece of advice a few weeks ago.  I didn’t like what she said.  But I trust her and I will follow it because deep in my heart I know it is right.  She told me once I leave Ben in his new home, I should not email, text, facebook, call or write him…..not until he reaches out first.

But what if he’s alone and afraid and doesn’t want to appear weak.  Worse yet, what if everything is great, he’s meeting awesome people, he’s involved and loving his new life…..and he forgets about me.  What if he doesn’t communicate with me for a few days or weeks……or ever again.  What if the role I thought I played in his life wasn’t all that I believed it was.  What if we’ve been living 2 different realities.

Some people are afraid of snakes, heights, or the dark.  Me?  I’m afraid of not having an awesome relationship with my children.  That realization is almost shocking enough to make me gasp.  But then I have flashbacks of my relationship (or lack thereof) with my mom, and I suddenly understand…..it’s not shocking at all.

I KNOW it will all be ok!  I KNOW this is exactly what is supposed to be happening, for him and for me!  I KNOW there is awesomeness on the other side of this transition.

I KNOW….no matter how much my head knows, my heart still hurts.

Twenty-one more days and this angel that changed my life the moment I held him in my arms will be starting the next chapter of his life.

For now, I’m finding comfort in my memories….

INQUISITIVE

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HANDSOME

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KIND

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FREE SPIRIT

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ATHLETIC

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HAPPIEST IN THE MOUNTAINS

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With joy, gratitude & love

Being an Imperfect Parent

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I had only been a mom for a few short months, but I was already over analyzing my every move, wondering if I was doing it right.  The thought of making a mistake filled me with fear as I felt the weight of the world on my shoulders, knowing that I was responsible for this little infant’s future.

As though it were yesterday, I can still hear my aunt’s words of wisdom in my head.  She said ” You are going to make mistakes as  a mother.  Something you do or say, or don’t do and don’t say, will invariably send your child into therapy.  That’s the nature of parenting.  So don’t worry so much about it.  Just love your children and do the best you can.”

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Those words gave me the freedom to own my imperfections as a parent.  Instead of fearing my mistakes, I could embrace them as an opportunity, a teaching moment for both myself and my children.

I have over reacted, spoken harshly, said “No” before hearing the full request, only half listened as they talked to me, raised my voice in anger…..oh the list goes on.

It’s the list of being human.

Yet the look on their little faces when I unnecessarily yelled at them, or spoke in a way that made them feel less than how awesome they really are, that look in their eyes that says “you wounded my soul”, that made me feel more like a monster than a human.

The guilt that follows is tangible – it is heavy, heart wrenching guilt.

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Parenting is the hardest job in the world.  There is no instruction manual, no rule book, no recipe, no parenting mentor overseeing the job we do day in and day out.  Parenting is subjective, and at times a very lonely job.

But I can tell you with certainty, one of the most valuable things we can do for our children is to accept responsibility when we falter as parents.  When we apologize for our mistakes, we can heal the wound we created with our words and actions.  It teaches our children authenticity, responsibility, respect and forgiveness.

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You will make mistakes – that’s just the nature of parenting.

But remember, in the midst of your mistakes….

YOU ARE DOING A GREAT JOB!

Not a perfect job, but an awesome, impactful, loving job!

I LOVE this video!!  It demonstrates how skewed our perspective can be.  Who will you listen to?  The voice of your children, or that nagging voice in your head?

A New Perspective For Moms from Elevation Church on Vimeo.

We could all use a dose of reality, directly from our kids.  I plan to share this with my boys, and let them know how much I’d love to have my own “New Perspective” video from them!  I hope you’ll consider doing the same.

with Joy & Gratitude,