Thursday, March 20, 2014

Shiny Happy People

So, lately things round here have been pretty darn great. I feel like maybe (maybe) we have reached a little season of calm. And I am just so very grateful. My babies, my husband, my life. I am blessed, exceedingly and abundantly, and I know it. I look at Georgie and Charlie and the ages they are right now, the way they are, I just feel so much more relaxed, and at ease. I feel like this is a time of less pressure, and stress with them and I just love it. 

 But the truth is, it's not all like that. It never can be all like that. There are always challenges mixed in with the blessings, and storms as well as sunshine.

You know, I think social media does us a disservice sometimes. You look at peoples facebook pages, or flick through your instagram feed, and the whole world seems to be having an awesome life. And here you are in your lonely little corner, and you've just had a fight with your husband and your dog has peed on the carpet, and everything just feels so damn ordinary.

If you looked at my facebook page, or Shane's, you would be forgiven for thinking we live the most beautiful life. And we do, but it is also intermingled with seasons of heartbreak, and loneliness, and hard work. But the thing is, that's life. And the shiny happy image, only tells half the story.

We have had a rough couple of years. Years where I wasn't sure if we were going to make it, where I wasn't sure if I was going to make it. I have been lower, and sadder and more desperate than I ever imagined possible. I have heard the enemy whisper darkness into my ear, and I have believed him.

But I am not alone. Every single step of the way, my God has been with me. He has been faithful when I was faithless. He has been strong in my weakness. He has been perfect, despite my imperfections.

Sometimes I feel a little... robbed or cheated or something. I look at photos of a newborn Charlie, and a baby Charlie, and sometimes all I remember is how hard it was. I feel like I have failed my children, and my family so much in the past few years. I've been selfish, oh so selfish! And I feel guilty.

But you know what God sees? He sees a beautiful history, filled with growth, and change. He sees the times I fell down but, instead of failure, he sees that I asked for his help. He sees all the times we were broken, and we allowed him to do work that he has been desperate to do.  He sees me. He is proud. And he Loves me. That's what I need to see too.

I don't want to compare myself to the pretty pictures anymore. Real life is hard, and beautiful, and raw, and awful, and lovely. But it is just so much better.

Learning Lessons

I often wonder, as a parent, How on earth can I teach my children lessons, that I am still learning myself?

I took the kids for a walk this afternoon in the double pram. And Charlie was fiddling with the hood of the pram, pushing it up, and down, and up and down.... it was irritating and he was going to jam his fingers. So I asked him to stop. He didn't of course, so I held the hood in place so he couldn't move it anymore. He realised I had spoiled his fun, so he got cranky, and kicked his sister.

I got up him, and told him. "When you are angry, and upset, it is not okay to take that out on somebody else!"

And as s the words came out of my mouth, I realised how much I needed to hear them. I remembered myself, earlier in the day. I had been clipping our dog Chloe, which is one of those jobs I just hate. The clippers must have gotten a bit hot, and hurt Chloe, and she yelped and tried to bite the clippers. But, because I was in hot and cranky and frustrated... I smacked her. And my reaction was exactly the same as my two year old's.

There are so many lessons, so many things that I want to get right for my kids. But the truth is, they are the lessons I am still learning and re-learning every day.

I guess we just have to learn together.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Radio silence

So everything has been pretty quiet on the blogging front lately. Why? Pick a reason, any reason. Life is busy, I'm fah-reaking exhausted, and somewhere along the line, the desire to write stuff down has kind of left me. Any of those things could account for it.

But one of my biggest problems has been.... Just being a parent. The simple truth is, I am not the mother I wanted to be. I'm not the mother I hoped to be, and I'm not anywhere close to being the mother I ever imagined I'd be. 

My kids are fed, clothed, bathed, and kept busy with an endless stream of play dates, park visits, swimming lessons and various social occasions. (Seriously, their social Calender is much more exciting than mine). But I'm failing big time, on so many of the things that I really think are important.

I'm not very disciplined, as a mother. I've always been a bit more spontaneous I guess. I like routine. But the discipline of it is hard. There is nothing like having two small children to nip spontaneity in the bud. But I still need to learn to do the dishes every night, and fold clothes every day, not just when it takes my fancy.

But it goes much deeper than something so simple as housework. I find it hard to give my kids structure at times, cooking nutritious meals (that they will eat) is such a chore. I worry, so much about the damage that I do. I lose my temper far too easily, and there are times when I get so incredibly anxious and I just cannot wait to have both my kids asleep in their beds, so that my body can finally relax.

I want to raise them to become good people. I want to teach them how to be kind, and considerate, and empathetic. I want to give them a thirst for learning, and a zest for life. I want them to be brave, and adventurous, and gentle. I want to show them the value of living with purpose and passion, and discipline. I want to show them how to love God, and live out your faith. But I just don't know how.

Also, It's little things, which are little, but important. Like the fact that my boy does not listen to me, and I can't be bothered to enforce the words I say. I never thought I'd be that parent. It's the whining three year old, that I just want to tune out because I don't know how to deal with her. It's the fact that my children spend far, far too much time watching television like mindless zombies because it's easier.

I am apathetic about parenting. And I hate that. I never thought I would be this mother. But I don't quite know how to change, I am working on it though, 

But at any rate, that kind if explains the radio silence.
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