a little and a lot

Monday, May 14, 2012

Ode to the 'Hood

We're coming up on 10 months with the Little Miss at home in our lives.  In some ways, I can't remember when it began, and in other ways, I feel like I'm still begging forgiveness and grace for my "new mommy-ness."

{For example, please forgive the measly handful of posts I've offered up this past year, bloggie friends!}

New mommy-ness in adoption world is quite strange--in many ways, I should have a 9-turning-10-month-old.  Instead, I feel like I'm tricked into believing I've been doing this a lot longer than I really have...!

Grace, grace, grace.  It is a wonderful thing.

Even though we are several months from "a year" of parenting, next week marks the first day we met our beautiful little then-baby.  And something about Mother's Day has me feeling an annual-ness about this point in time.

I have struggled with Mother's Day in the past...
For some reason, I thought I had blogged a ton about it.  But lo and behold, this is the only blurb in part of a post in which I mention any type of issue with the holiday.

I was never quite sure "when" to celebrate Mother's Day.  We were in-process for several years, and I likened it be being pregnant...but...it was not the same.  Last year, I had "a child," but I still hadn't met her yet, and I certainly wasn't caring for her full-time.  I so badly wanted to celebrate.  (Do I raise my hand in worship service for "who is the newest mother??")

 And as is true in adoption-world, my Mother's Day will always be shared with other women on the other side of the world.  I did not become a mother on my own--it was another woman who birthed the child I now raise.  My daughter was someone else's daughter first.  And there were precious women who selflessly filled in the gap when Rhet needed food, clothing, shelter, and arms to hold her.  I recognize all of those women as mothers in Rhet's life--women who nurtured and cared for her before I could.

I do not feel threatened by this.  I feel humbled.  You are kidding yourself if you think you've done this whole motherhood thing on your own, no matter who you are or how you became a mom.

In the spirit of my annual-ish pondering over the past year (and in light of the most recent holiday), this post is an ode to Motherhood.

Motherhood, you have kicked my butt.
I thought you would come naturally.  And in many ways, you have.  But every day, you push me to my limit so that I have to cry "mercy" and run to the Holy Spirit for help.  (That's not such a bad thing.)

Motherhood, you may not have stretched out my belly, but you have stretched out my heart.
My capacity to love (my family, others, unselfishly) is growing, growing, growing.

Motherhood, you have hidden me under your wings this year.
I feel like I am just now emerging from this transition, like that 10-month-old I "should" have, who would be standing up on wobbly feet.  I am that wobby-feet-kid-mom.  I feel ready to try new things again...like having a social life...pursuing hobbies...being a good friend...ok, maybe just being A friend... ;)

I have a lot of mom-guilt that this has been such a big transition for me.  I wish I was cooler and way more breezy and go-with-the-flowish and oh, it was nothing-y.  But this was a big life-change.  A big budget-change.  A big marriage-change.  A big time management-change.  Motherhood, you are a guilt-magnet, but I know you do not intend to be so.  You are just trying to teach me that I'm not all that.  Which is okay.

Motherhood, I love you.  You bring little hands holding my bigger hands.  You bring little squeezes around my neck and little lips smooching my cheeks.  You bring giggles and gorgeous smiles for sometimes no reason at all.  Motherhood, sometimes you irritate the crap out of me.  You bring little elbows and knees out of nowhere, jabbing me in the most vulnerable places.  You bring tantrums and time outs.  You bring stains on every single piece of clothing ever to be worn by anyone.  I love you and I dislike you, Motherhood, but mostly I love you.

But you are not my idol.  You are part of me, Motherhood, but you are not all of me.  But you are gracious like that.  You let me be bigger and wider and reach farther than you--you want me to grow beyond you.

Happy Mother's Day to all of you who are part of the 'Hood.
And Happy Mother's Day to all of you who carry a mother's heart in one way or another--you may not get your maple donut with bacon crumbled on top or your handwritten card, but you deserve a thousand thank you's for the ways you bless God's children.


Jane said...

Happy Mother's Day to you!! And I love your Ode.

Nick Faris said...

I, for one, think you are a stinking awesome mom and I'm happy to watch you and Rhet grow together on a daily basis. You deserve all the Gibson's maple bars in the world.

Adopting Rhet: Click on the timeline above to read more