Category Archives: mama journals

Awake

It’s 4:29am.

Last night I slept between the hours of midnight to 3am. Before that, unable to sleep, and then woken by Judah at 3:00.

After feeding him I laid in bed until 4:28, tossing and turning, eyes heavy, mind racing.

Sleep illusive.

So many thoughts run though my head in those hours of the night.

I listen to Ryan breathing heavily on one side of me, Judah breathing lightly on the other, wishing I oculd be asleep like them.

I think of Levi in the next room, and wonder things like “If I had held him more as a baby, would he be more affectionate now?” Only to follow it up with thoughts like, “I loved him fiercely and held him often. Of course he’d be the same. It’s not my actions that have made him so independent, it’s his personality.” (I know that, but in the small hours it’s easy to lose your anchor a little.)

Besides, he is affectionate. He clearly loves me fiercely too.

I yhink of other deep things like “why don’t they sell honey Nut Cherrios in Australia? And cheezeits?”

I think of things I’ve read. I think of people who are affecting my life through what they’ve written or said or have (or haven’t) done.

I think of people who are waiting to hear from me. What will I say? How will I pray?

What does my life speak?

Earlier tonight as I was trying to alow myself to fall asleep I had this thought – what if God’s answer for my plea for “alone time” are these hours of wakefulness during the night when I wishwishwish I was sleeping? Ugh.

And what if it’s not? What if it’s just that I’ve got to learn to let go a litlt more, quiet my mind a little more?

What if I just need to start doing yoga again? (Seriously.)

I thought about all the noise. (I have so much noise.) I read too much, think too much, listen too much, do too much, commit to too much, try to please too much.

And then I think tomorrow will be different. Tomorrow I will simplify.

Because what if that’s what He’s trying to whisper in the dark?

Slow down. Create margin. Be present. Stop multi-tasking. Inhale, exhale.

Have some fun.

Last night before bed (the first time) I put my phone in airplane mode. I won’t switch it back to normal for 24 hours – a Sabbath from the internet. I’ve done the same with my laptop. (Hense, though I’m writing this now, I’m offline so I’ll post it much, much later tonight.)

I’m tired of being notified all. the. time. I’m tired of being constantly available so much so that maybe I’m not available enough to the ones who matter most. Or myself. Or Him.

I only have one chance at this life and I’m certain how I live it is bigger than this life now that I can see.

So I’m up. In the night hours. Listening, waiting, praying. Knowing that there’s something more.

(And still longing and praying for sleep.)

Hello? I’m listening.

STOP.

 

Q for you: Are you awake? Awake when you’re meant to be? Awake when your not meant to be?

 

Love,
A

p.s. I wrote without a timer tonight. I’m guessing it was closer to six minutes, or maybe even seven. Probably seven or eight. I don’t know; I’m tired. #fiveminutefail

 

Click Clink Five | Five minutes a day, unedited.

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A very magical, very normal moment of clarity

It was 8:30am and I still sat in bed with just my undies and a tank top on.

The curtains were drawn wide, the windows open – floor to ceiling luvers – tons of light pouring in. Slight breeze.

Chris Chabot played on the little stereo on our bedhead just next to a cup of fresh coffee.

Judah was next to me, giggling and chatting. Levi was climbing on and off the bed – playing with Judah, saying “watch mommy” as he showed me whatever impressive feat he was trying out next and intermittently giving spontaneous hugs and kisses to little brother.

I was still sleepy but I was so, so happy.

There wasn’t anything magical about those moments… not magical in the “wow” sense of the word at least. But magical in the it’s-beautiful-just-as-it-is-in-this-very-normal-moment sort of way.

“I’m so glad to be a stay-at-home-mom,” I thought to myself.

Lately I’ve been having lots of moments that are very much, um, how shall I say…? opposite to that.

But as babies have been getting healthier and I have been getting a little more sleep… the demands of my “job” haven’t seemed as draining as tehy sometimes do.

And this morning I was remembering what an incredible privilege I have to be home wiht my boys instead of in an office somewhere. As hard as 24/7 childcare can sometimes feel (and it’s so much more than “childcare” – yes, I know that), it’s also so wonderfully rich and rewarding… and fun.

As long as we can stop for little moments and remember to breathe deeply and appreciate it for what it is.

Which was Exactly what I was doing htis morning.

STOP.

 

Q for you: When is the last time you took a moment to be grateful for your job?

 

Love,
A

 

Click Clink Five | Five minutes a day, unedited


But somehow

Just when the bottom felt as if it would fall out, friends came through.

Friends bringing dinner. Friends bringing freshly folded laundry. Friends bringing hugs.

It doesn’t take many. Just two or three can make a world of difference.

I’m as tired today as I was yesterday, but knowing there’s people “out there” that come close (or pray) when you’re in need? That makes all the difference.

Baby is still sick. Husband is still sick. Rain is still falling. Laundry is still strung out all over in the living room to dry. Toddler is still stir crazy. I am still beyond exhausted.

But somehow, it feels like it’s all going to be alright.

Last night at one point we had our entire family in our queen size bed. And then we were divided – one parent with one child in our room and one with the other in the guest room.

When it’s hitting the fan you do waht you need to do. That’s called being the mom. (Or dad.)

But wow, am I glad to know that we’re not doing it alone.

How people survive without a support network of friends and family and church is just beyond me.

I’ll just count my blessings, pray for sleep, and try again for another night to let it all go so my mind can rest at ease.

STOP.

 

Q for you: Do you have a good support network in  your life? If not, are you working on it?

 

Love,
A

 

Click Clink Five | Five minutes a day, unedited.
Adriel also writes on motherhood and parenting at The Mommyhood Memos


Selfishness, make haste!

While skyping with Ryan tonight he told Levi “two more sleeps” until he comes home. I corrected him saying it was actually three sleeps since Levi will be in bed hours before Ryan flies in at 10:40pm on Sunday night.

Ryan then suggested that he might just wake Levi up to say hello when he gets in.

Immediately I chided, “oh no you won’t! I haven’t slept in two weeks!” (Camping being the week before. And truthfully, I haven’t really slept in six weeks. Or six months. But whatever, not the point.)

It didn’t occur to me until after I hung up that my response was incredibly selfish.

We’re now finishing day six of being on our own and I’m swinging between feeling like supermom and feeling very “alone” and a little sorry for myself. (My response was driven from that second extreme, obviously.)

In many ways it’s not been an easy week at all. (No need for me to launch into details here. You can imagine.)

But in many ways it’s been fun. For the most part, I’ve made the most of it and put in a little effort to do some special things with the boys as I’ve drastically toned down my to-do lists.

Of course, it’s also been tiring. (Very.)

And sleep (the lack and longing of it) often occupies my mind these days.

So that’s why I immediately thoguht of myself when Ryan suggested waking Levi up for a late-night ‘hello’ upon his arrival.

Justified? Maybe.

Selfish? Yeah. Completely.

Ryan’s also been separated from us for six days and misses us like crazy.

I’ll be up anyway (picking him up from the airport) so what’s it to me if he wakes up Levi? Seriously Adriel, sometimes you’re just selfish for no other reason than you’re vision is short-sighted. Like navel-gazing short-sided.

Even if Ryan doesn’t “want” to wake Levi when he gets home on Sunday night… I will make sure it happens. For his sake mostly, and for Levi’s. (Levi is easy to get resettled these days anyway.) But also for mine.

Selfishness, make haste. You are SO unattractive.

STOP.

Q for you: When is the last time you said something without thinking it through and then later realized you were being completely selfish?

Love,
A

p.s. Went over time today. Again.

Click Clink Five | Five minutes a day, unedited.
Adriel also writes (using spell check) on motherhood and parenting on The Mommyhood Memos.


The one about boredom (and how it’s foreign to me)

I can’t remember the last time I was bored.

I never get bored.

It might even be impossible for me to get bored.

I’m one of those types that always has more to do (or that I want to do) than I have time for.

A few weeks ago I was whining to my husband about this. (Actually, I was crying.)

Wht’s wrooooong with me? Why can’t I seem to find more margin in my life?

He told me that even if I had less “to do” I would find more “to do” to fill my time. That’s just who I am. I never will be a sit-around person.

You know what? He’s right.

I’m like htat. a do-er.

A million ideas sdn things and chores and projects and… did I already say ideas? and only 24 hours in teh day.

When he said that to me it didn’t make me mad. It atually helped me to relax a little.

This is just who I am. And as long as I can be who i am without stressing about it (key right tehre, folks) then everything will be just fine. Life will be full and I will be loving it.

But i can’r stress about it. I can’t. THAT will destroy me.

I’m reminding myslef this today as I just finished my dinner at 9:20pm. I’m pretty beat and the only time I’ve sat down today was to feed my baby. (God-ordained rests for mothers of littles, i’m convinced.)

And now the day is over – too tired to “do” anything today.

All I have to show for the day is a husband and two littles who have been fed and diapered adn hugged and played with. (well, i didn’t diaper my husband, thank God.)

And a clean kitchen. yay for hte clean kitchen.

Laundry will just have to wait until tomorrow. There’s always tomorrow.

STOP.

Q for you: What do you do when you get bored? (Do you get bored?)

Love,
A

P.S. Judah was having a hold-me-pretty-much-all-day-long kind of day today. (Must be a phase, he’s had a lot of them lately.) It was tiring, but I eventually just caved, burned my list, and hung out with him. It was fun. Hanging with the littles is always fun.

Click Clink Five is a blog by Adriel Booker. | Five minutes a day, unedited. | 2012 All rights reserved. | Adriel also writes on parenting and motherhood at The Mommyhood Memos.


Bad mom, good mom? Nope, just best mom.

It’s amazing how–in the space of 48 hours–you can feel like such a terrible mom… and then like supermom.

Yesterday was a scream fest around here.

Don’t ask me why – I have no idea.

If I’d have known, I would have (possibly) known how to fix it.

But I didn’t.

Judah had two all-out screaming episodes, lasting 45 or 60 minutes each. I rocked, I paced, I bounced, I nursed, I went outside,I went in a dark room, I swayed, I sang. I don’t know what else I did (I prayed!), but nothing was working. NOTHING.

And even though I knew that his screaming was not a reflection on my parenting, it’s still hard not to feel like you’re somehow “failing” as a mom when you don’t know how to meet your child’s needs.

Today was a new day.

Levi was hyper. I mean, HYPER. And I was terrified because I desperately needed to go to the grocery store this mornign. (I try to avoid taking both kids if I have to. One is fine, but two can be tricky!)

But i had to do it.

Levi was amazing. Judah slept in teh Ergo. I did my shopping.

Everone was calm and–wallah–shopping done. I felt so good that we stopped for a coffee (and baby chino) and a donut before going home. (Yeah, I was sort-of rewarding myself!)

The rest of the day followed suit – great naps, calm mother, dinner prepped and in the oven by 4:30. Yup, rockstar mummy.

So today I felt like supermom.

I’m not a better mom than I was yesterday. But I do feel better.

Amazing how feelings can, um, make you feel.

Anyway, on “good” days and “bad” – I’m the same mom. Super? Not always… but best? (for my kids)? Yes.

STOP.

 

Q for you: How do you keep from “judging” yourself based on others’ behavior?

 

Love,
A

p.s. Oh, and getting my post finished before 5pm? It really is a supermom day.

 

Click Clink Five is a blog by Adriel Booker. | Five minutes a day, unedited. | 2012 All rights reserved. | Adriel also writes on parenting and motherhood at The Mommyhood Memos.