I think one of the hardest parts of being a Mommy- especially a full time Mommy- is the complete lack of boundaries. Not a Mommy? Let me list a few examples of things that are no longer, truly, my own: hair, body, time, bathroom time, phone, keys, zippers, cups, food, electronics, magazines… and jewelry.
Occasionally, even my own emotions do not seem like my own. Frustration, time demands, family demands all pile up and suddenly I am dreaming of crossing everything off my never ending lists- but only if I had no other demands- and my emotions run hot. It is not that I don’t love being a Mom- I do- and a full time Mom is my dream. However, on a day like today, I also miss when things were my own and Mommy didn’t always have to be “on”.
Case in point: as Baby Bunny was busy coloring with chunky crayons, all over the kitchen floor, Mommy decided this activity was not fun and gently took said crayons away. Well, that was apparently the worst thing ever and Baby Bunny FREAKED out! Trying to scratch and hit me she caught my necklace in her itty bitty finger and yanked hard. SNAP.
My necklace fell into my hands. My beautiful Tiffany’s necklace, given to me before my wedding by my parents. Chain snapped. Hearts all topsy turvy, in a pile on the crayon colored kitchen floor.
And my first thought? ‘I should be upset’. I should be upset that my favorite, luxurious necklace is snapped in two. I should be upset that my little bunny, that I pour my life into, felt it the best action to hit me when I removed a crayon. I should be upset that at 4:00 in the afternoon, I have not gotten to even eat breakfast yet. But instead I saw the bigger picture.
My baby, no matter what age, will always look to me. And as my necklace lay on the floor, she looked up into my eyes with sadness and a level of understanding that her simple vocabulary could not express. She was asking me, with her eyes, “How do we react to this? How important is this THING, Mommy? How will you teach me to react to things in life when they break or don’t go my way?”. I decided that I wanted my daughter to react to life, and challenges- even ones that make you really frustrated- with patience and an understanding of what is the ‘bigger picture’. I calmly said, ” Mommy is sad because her necklace broke when you got angry. But it can be fixed. We need to be gentle, even when we are angry.”
How many times have we gotten really angry or frustrated, and reacted in a stronger way than we needed? And how many times has God looked down on us as a loving parent and sighed. Wondering- was that really necessary? Did you have to hurt my ______ in reaction to this simple ______?
I want my God and my baby to see that my heart lies in things much more precious and durable than the things filling my house. Adeiu, dear necklace. But hello, Mommy- you are learning every day.