May 24, 2010

What is motherhood to me?

There isn’t a simple answer.

Motherhood is tiny fingers holding your thumbs, The many mommy badges on your favorite clothes or camera in my case. The selflessness and innocence, the learning and teaching, the belonging or maybe those beautiful eyes that look up at me. From the moment I found out I was pregnant I knew there was someone other then me, someone more important then I am. For the most part the pregnancy was enjoyable. The delivery not so much but the second she started moving in my belly -- I loved her. My heart has never beat the same. The way I think, things I do, everything is for her. As it should be. I have grown just as much as she has in the last seventeen months. I’m not going to say motherhood is easy -- it isn’t. There are ins and outs just like anything else. She cries, wines and throws temper tantrums -- I think it’s cute but lets face it, it can get a little nerve wrecking after a while. Especially when I have a headache or am tired from a busy day at work. Julia is no longer a baby, I can’t get over how fast she has grown up. I remember the day she was born like it was just yesterday. Now she has a little personality and the faces to go with it. She’s talking and pretty much understands everything you say to her, It’s whether she wants to listen or not that you have to worry about. She is the light in my life. She just turned 17 months a last week! I look at her baby clothes from when she was a newborn, sometimes, she was so tiny! I can’t believe she fit them. I can’t believe my baby was that small. I remember the first time I held her, I was so nervous, scared to hurt her or do something wrong. She would cry and all I wanted to do was pick her up regardless of her really needing something or not. She has always been a Mommy’s girl. Motherhood is walking out of the grocery store leaving a cart full of groceries behind. Repetitive teaching. You don’t want to say ‘No’ but what else can you say? Most of the time you’re saying no with a smile on your face because she’s just too darn cute when she does something wrong and knows it. Motherhood is......Whatever makes them smile you will find yourself doing. Itsy Bitsy Spider for the 18th time, her favorite book, (Im Glad Im Your Mother) one more time. Spending your money on her and not yourself -- and enjoying doing it, too. Toys covering the floor but you don’t care because if you did you‘d pick them up 10x a Self sacrifice is the biggest of all the learning curves I have gone through with my daughter. My heart grows a little more every time I see her face smiling, smirking. I wouldn’t change this for the world.

May 13, 2010

What motherhood has taught me so far........

So, I am just a month shy of having an 18 month old baby girl, and I feel as though I’ve learned a lifetime of things that I could have never even been exposed to, had I not become a mother. The saying "having a child is a life changing event" is always true, but I never took the time to see how life changing it really was for me other than the physical symptoms (you know, lack of sleep and the random bruises from toddler play).

I’ve learned that my heart can experience feelings I never imagined, from pure joy to stone cold fear and everything in between. Who would think that something so small could invoke such huge emotions? Especially in someone like myself who liked to "stop and smell the roses" but never really took time to appreciate the smell.

I’ve learned to be young again. The man or lady who is giving me the strange face while my daughter and I sing itsy bitsy spider down the aisles of Target, doesn’t really understand how to play without rules. It’s OK to sing Happy Birthday in the bathtub and to run up and down the hallways singing and dancing to Elmo singing Splish Splash:)

I’ve learned that boogers happen. From the runny noses to the big green booger monsters, they happen to everyone, there’s no reason to be grossed out by them anymore. Besides, anything that my kid can eat and not cause instant projectile vomiting, I’m OK with. And yes, boogers fall into that category.

I’ve learned that I will never be the mother I thought I would be. There were times I was certain I would fail as a mother and other times I was certain I’d be Carol Brady meets Jill Taylor (remember the mom from Home Improvement?). Thankfully, neither really came true, I became my own style mother and certainly didn’t fail, at least not yet. But I’ve realized that a lot of my preconceived notions about motherhood were either false or just something that could be worked around.

I’ve learned that I can still be who I am and be a mother, cherishing both but not separating them into two different identities. Seriously, I have enough psychological issues to worry about without trying to give myself a split personality. I take great pride in being a mother, whether I am playing with my daughter at home, while I am in a meeting at work or while I am having sushi with a girlfriend. Being a mother isn’t something I shut off and I can’t imagine why anyone would want to.

I’ve learned that I can face most anything when given the right motivation. And imagine, that little girl that yells no at me, pinches me and makes me gag with diapers is that I’ve killed spiders that I typically wouldn’t have been in the same house with, let alone touched.

I’ve learned that no matter what life brings I am responsible for me and my own and that these are lessons I want to pass on to my child and that no matter what parenting guides tell you or what your friends say, each lesson learned is different for each and every mother.
I’ve learned that every moment is special and no matter how much you try to set up the perfect portrait session, only to have it ruined last minute because your daughter was super cranky, didnt take the nap you thought she would and then proceeded to have a major explosion in her diaper -- it’s special! Or even the smallest moment when they grab you by the cheeks and give you a big open mouth bass kiss can be bigger than Christmas morning.

I’ve learned that I have learned a lot in the last year and a half. And I look forward to what the rest of this journey has to teach me.

May 11, 2010

Mothers Day 2010

I hope everyone had a beautiful mothers day! Mine was wonderful and relaxing:) Pedicure with my mama and grandma. BBQ and family fun. We went to church and listened to a beautiful sermon on mothers. He said something to me that I just had to share with everyone. I have known some parents over the years that have put many things above teaching their babies about Jesus. Careers, Hobbies, Education...etc...

"Your child knowing the bible is more important than your continuing education. Your child’s spirituality, than your personal accomplishments. Your child’s soul, more important than a defined body and clothes. Your child’s eternal life, than your success in this life. Your child’s relationship with Jesus, than your popularity in this world. Your child’s standing before God than your social standing in this world." -Pastor Terry Hlebo

I know that one day I will stand before the Lord and be resonsible for what I chose as important to teach my child and if her knowing the Lord isnt at the top of the list, shame on me. There is nothing wrong with teaching them about the importance of education or the importance of being a good member of society, but I want to go above and beyond that and raise a disciple of Jesus:)

He talked about the importance of reading the bible, not only you reading it, but reading it to your babies. There are so many good books out there about parenting and even christian parenting but the Bible is different than any other book and should be top priority. I am guilty of this at times. I love to read books about where Julia is at developmentally. Toddler books, discipline books, learning books, and all those things are ok, but is my first priority to raise her according to what the bible says?

I was so convicted and encouraged by this study and I am so excited to get down to what is important. Being that Godly example for my daughter to see and mimic. Teaching her that God is always to come first in her life.

May 8, 2010

Play and Learn Class!

Last night Julia and I had our very first Play and Learn class. Its a lot like mommy and me and preschool all wrapped into one. I was so happy to find a class like this that is in the evening, most of the classes I would find were during the weekday and I work during the day so that would be impossible. Come to find out the teacher of this class works during the day as well and just had a great desire to do a class like this for parents that work, so what a huge blessing that is:) There are about 10 other kids in the class, so I was so excited to see a good turn out for a Friday evening. They started the class by letting the kids chase some bubble around and start to interact with one another, while the Ms Tabatha explained what the class was going to consist of. Numbers, Letters, Colors, Shapes, Story-time, Arts and Crafts and Singing Songs. All of the things that I try to do with Julia at home. I am just happy she is going to be able to learn and also interact with other kids, that was pretty much my main reason for signing up for the class. After Bubbles we went around the room and introduced ourselves and our little pride and joys. Since Mothers Days is Sunday, for arts and crafts they made little flowers and butterflies to give to us. Ms Tabatha also handed out these adorable handmade pins that say Mom. Julia had a blast sticking the letters and decorations on her butterfly:) After arts and crafts they all went to the carpet for some singing and counting time. They sang Head Shoulder Knees and Toes, one of Julias favs, there a pic below of her participating by putting her hands on her head:) They also sang Itsy Bitsy Spider, another of Julias favs, she says...pider mama..pider:) They practiced counting from 1-10 and then from 10-1 and even sang the alphabet song:) After song time she rounded them up for a little story-time, in honor of Mothers Day she read a mommy and baby book called, Love You Forever, this little book got me kind of emotional even though I had read it a thousands times before, I hadnt read it since having Julia and the words mean so much more now:) Ill love you forever, Ill like you for always, as long as im living my baby you'll be!! It was a great start to her first class and I loved watching her interact with the other kids. Enjoy the pics!!

Sprinkler Fun

So last Tuesday my mom let Julia have some water fun in our sprinklers! She LOVES the water and had a blast running through the sprinklers:) Enjoy the pics

May 7, 2010

Shoes, Make-up and all things Julia:)

Life with my little Julia Noelle is anything but boring. She keeps me on my toes, with an adventure at every corner. I love that she is such an active little girl! She is always on the go and up for whatever life throws at her. She is definitely giving me a run for my money:) By the end of the evening I am wiped out.

She is definitely starting to show more of her girly side and I love it:) She loves to watch me put my make-up on and asks for some too. I pat her little face with my face powder and she gets this huge smile on her face. She likes for me to put my chapstick on her and tries copy me when I blot my too funny! She is really into shoes right now. She loves to put on her different shoes and LOVES to try to walk around with my heels on when I get home from work! When I bring home a new pair of shoes for her she gets SO excited and wants to put them on right away and wear them around the is she doesnt want to take them off when its time for a bath! She loves to call things pretty now. When I came home with my new tattoo on my ankle she kept pointing at it saying pretty mama...pretty! Same with our flowers in the front yard and the spring flags my mom put out:)

A few weeks ago our church had a baptism at a community pool and I got a little preview of what summer will be like with this little girl. She absolutely LOVES the water! She was a splashing maniac and hated when I tried to take her out. I am so excited for trips to the pool and beach trips with my girl, this summer:) Grandma let her run through the sprinklers this last week and she had a of that to come soon!