On parenting

Some days this whole parenting thing leaves me curled up on the floor of my bedroom gasping for breath as the tears fall uncontrollably.  I feel terrified I am making unfixable mistakes—or already have—or am going to tomorrow.  I do not know the right way to respond—or to answer—or to even approach.  I wonder why everyone else I know is so much better at this.  I feel confused—and lost—and like I have no idea what I am doing.  I feel isolated—that our challenges are somehow different than everyone else so I am therefore unable to talk about them—or ask for help—or even ask for someone to listen.  I am defeated.

And yet…

Some days are beautiful.  They are filled with laughter—and hand-holding—and quiet snuggling—and inside jokes—and non-stop play.  With moments where I stare at their beautiful faces and try as hard as I can to sear them into my memory—exactly as they are at this moment.  Moments where I am asked a thousand questions and I try my best to answer them all while filled with awe of this intense hunt for knowledge and understanding.  Moments where I observe kindness when they don’t even know I am watching.  Days where I go to bed with a heart that is so painfully full of love I am not sure I will be able to sleep.

I am thankful that my beautiful days outnumber my broken ones.  While I am not perfect I think it is important that I am able to recognize that and allow it to drive me towards being better.  I am working SO hard at this and will not be stopping.  I am a mom.  A mom!!!  To this day, almost 11 years after the birth of our daughter, that still amazes me!!!  I am so in love with these kids—if I allow myself a moment to stop and just think about it for a minute I quickly become overwhelmed.

Today was a good day.

SUMMER!!!!!

Finally!!!  I will never be able to fully express how much I love summer break.  It is the highest form of self-care.  

That being said I also have a son who thrives on structure and routine.  So it’s not just lay around all day in the sun around here (as much as I would love to).  Once again we have created our ‘summer schedule.’  Although it is a bit simpler this year.  Our daily schedule basically looks like this:

9:00—Exercise (in some way shape or form)

10:00—Bridge books (my daughter hates these but does them—my son desperately needs to feel some semblance of his school routine so this helps)

11:00-Clean (I have a daily job—this week we have been cleaning out the project room in order to convert it to a dance/jiu Jitsu room)

12:00-lunch and then downtime (reading)

1-4ish-the day’s ‘activity’

5ish to bedtime-dinner and whatever

The morning activities are interchangeable—although Boomer really likes to follow the time.

The afternoon activity can be something that just comes up or something from our handy poster.

  
We tried drawing out of a jar one summer—this summer we are picking off the chart.  Today they chose painting rocks—they were both excited about it and both loved it.  We had plenty of time to spare so we also made rice krispies treats and oatmeal chocolate chip cookies.  Yesterday was swimming.  Who knows what tomorrow will bring…

Bring it, summer!!!!

Good Intentions

This morning I was determined to start eating healthy.  

But then I listened to venting, heard heartbreak, witnessed meltdowns, sat with the sleeping, made plans for next year, cried as I read my daughters poem, worried about the years progress, and watched my son disappear behind a parked car as he was chased by a dog his size with my heart leaving my body.  He emerged upset but only scraped up from falling, no bites.

So I ate a fish dinner with fries from Long John Silvers.

Words

There seem to be periods in my life where words began to build inside me like an oklahoma storm front.  I can feel them sliding in and out of consciousness—not making much sense, just So. Many. Words.  I must have a hundred thousand things to say locked up in there trying to form into coherent phrases and find their way out.  Sometimes they actually do.  Other times the storm simply passes and nothing happens.  Tonight is one of those nights there are so many words I am responding to emails just to get a few out of my head.  As we have been reading Harry Potter I have found the idea of a pensieve completely fascinating.  I can imagine nothing more awesome at this moment than being able to pull a though from my head and place it in a bowl for a while…

If only I had some sort of control maybe I could be writing something awesome at this moment, instead of explaining why I’m not.  But I don’t.  So I can’t.

On Mother’s Day…

Mothering is hard hard work.  The hardest.  Yesterday my mother sat with her mother (as she has most days for the last many days) but this one was harder—as they started hospice.  Brutal.  Today, on Mother’s Day, I am heartbroken and helpless and thankful and loved and tired and grateful and sorry and blessed and raw and broken.

Hi.

My name is Sarah.  And I am a dance mom.

Funny thing is I never really wanted to be a dance mom.  I’ve seen like 1/2 an episode of the infamous show before and it literally made me nauseous…  Definitely not a world I wanted to be a part of.  And yet…  I have this little girl who started taking dance right before she turned 3.  This little girl who marched out onto the stage at her first recital like a rockstar.  She smiled and danced and smiled and danced some more and loved every minute of it.  And here we are 7 years later and nothing has changed.

Turns out being a dance mom is nothing like the TV show.   There is hair to french twist, costumes to sequin, and eyelashes to glue.  But those things are not what any of it is about.  Being a dance mom is actually kind of amazing.

You get to watch friendships grow, girls who support each other through thick and thin.  Who are not tearing each other down to bring themselves up.  In fact I have repeatedly watched as they build each other up when one is feeling low.  You get to see them cheer each other on even when they are competing in the same category.  You get to see tears from your 7-year-old after leaving the stage at her first competition not because she was upset but because “I’m just so happy!!!”  You get to see not just yours but ALL the girls work their butts off week after week to perfect the little things.  You get to see the performances that show just how far all that work has taken them.  You get to watch your daughter finally nail her triple she’s been working so hard on front and center in competition.  Then watch as she nearly explodes from excitement as she walks off stage.  You get to see your little girl become stronger, more athletic, more graceful and most of all-more confident.  

So yes.  I am a dance mom.  And it’s kind of freaking awesome.

To my awesome dancer—I am SO proud of you and every last one of your teammates…





Savor

The past few months have been a little rough around the homefront…  Nothing major just lots and lots and LOTS of minors.

But today…

Today we were able to get all our saturday cleaning jobs done by 9:58!!!  (a new record)

Today we had an almost spontaneous play date that he has been waiting weeks for…



Today I dropped one off to rollerskate with friends and drove the other one around the corner to happen upon ‘Arizona Adventureland.’  How could we not stop to play?



Followed by dinner with this same guy.

Some reading of Harry Potter with both.

And some Skip-Bo with her after he went to bed.





Today consisted of only one meltdown.  One!!!!  A minor one consisting only of yelling of things such as—“why are you taking so long to read?!?!  I have been good all day!!!  I have been doing my PERSONAL BEST!!!!!!” Followed by a self-imposed time alone to cool down-which worked!!!

Today was beautiful.  My mind has a way of turning that into ‘well, tomorrow is obviously going to be hell…’  But I am not listening.  At least not for the next 5 minutes.  I am going to just sit. And savor. And be happy.

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