It's Almost Time for Summer Break! Oh No!
As they play, having the best time of their young lives, do they even notice me though? Do they pay attention to what Mom's pool experience is really like? Do they ever wonder how that bag packed full of towels, sunscreen, floaties, snacks and toys actually made it to the pool? Do they see how, instead of relaxing with a good book, I am at constant attention, monitoring four children as they play and splash? I worry as much about them developing skin cancer, as I do about them drowning. It is an oftentimes stressful situation. I am constantly smearing sunscreen on someone as I pull someone else back from the brink of death in deep end.
The way I look at it, summers should be a magical time for kids. I have many fond memories of summers as a child. This is the time of your life when you shouldn't have a care in the world. I work so hard to create childhood memories for them. I want them to look back one day and feel as though they had a great childhood.
I would not give my summers with my children for anything in the world. It is often times stressful and trying. We get on each others nerves most days. By the end of the summer I will be 100% ready for them to go back to school. But they are only kids for such a small part of their lives. I treasure these times.
Besides, this year I have a plan. In those moments when I am questioning why I ever stopped working 7 years ago, just to stay at home with a bunch of crying, whiny, argumentative, stubborn, smart-mouthed, demanding kids, instead of melting into a puddle of tears on the floor (every mother has these days), I will grab my box of Ho Hos, head to my closet, and I will eat those cakes, one by one, until I remember why it is I became a mother.
I became a mother to experience the highs as well as the difficult times. I became a mother for better, for worse. Being a mother is not ever an easy job. It is the hardest job you will ever have. It is also the most rewarding thing you will ever do. Even my absolute worst days as a mother, I gain strength and knowledge. Being a mother means screwing up often. You must get past the guilt of your shortcomings and just do the best you can, one day at a time.
You see, that moment when I emerge from that closet, with disheveled hair, swollen eyes and chunks of chocolate cake still stuck to my face, it will be a victory. I made it. I am a REAL mother. I learn a little more every day. I get a little stronger every day. My children are my purpose. I must have done something pretty good in my life to be rewarded so richly.