In an effort to develop that writing habit I’m always talking about but never acting on, I signed up for The Daily Post’s Writing 101: Building a Blogging Habit. It’s essentially a daily writing challenge with prompts and support to help get into a blogging habit and grow as a writer and blogger.
This is going to be a HUGE stretch for me since I can barely post once a week, but I think it’s just the kick in the pants I need to get going.
So, here we are on Day 1 and I finally got around to today’s writing challenge at 10:00pm. Better late than never, right? Today’s challenge was 20 minutes of stream of consciousness writing – just sit down and put anything that comes into your brain on paper. So, as a treat for anyone who happens to read this (aside from my mother), here’s a look at 20 unedited minutes inside by my brain:
I am tired, oh so tired, it’s amazing how tired I feel!
I sang “I Feel Pretty” to Georgia the other day and she clapped in delight and asked for it again and again. I think she loved just listening to me sing, but she also maybe loved a song about being pretty. We have perhaps told her she’s pretty way too many times because she will often look at herself in the mirror in the morning after getting dressed and say “I look beautiful!”
I’ve worried that we tell her that too much, that she’s going to become narcissistic or too full of herself. But yet, another part of me thinks what is so wrong with a little positive self-esteem? I certainly never look in the mirror in the morning and tell myself “I look beautiful”. If anything, I look in the mirror and think “Ugh. I need to get a haircut/brow wax/facial/makeover/whateverwillmakemelooklikeasupermodel.” And is that really any more healthy than telling myself I’m beautiful everyday? I truly don’t want my daughter to be narcissistic, but I absolutely want to raise her to have better self-esteem than I have. I’m not sure where I lost it. Maybe somewhere among the scoliosis back brace, the 2 bouts with braces, acne that I could never seem to get rid of.
That’s part of the amazing thing about young children. They are so pure and untouched by anything bad or painful that they think life is beautiful, they are beautiful. It’s beautiful to watch, and yet a little sad to realize that it won’t last forever, that they will end up jaded just like the rest of us. I know I can’t keep my daughter little forever, but oh if I could just freeze time a little longer. Every day she is older, acting more like a big girl than a baby, more like her own person (and what an independent, strong little person she is!)
She also has the most incredible spirit. I am in awe of her everyday, of her tenacity, her boldness, her strength. Yes, I am absolutely glorifying what can be, if manifested properly, the worst traits of a toddler, but in truth they are traits that will serve her well in life if we can shape her into a good person and not a horrible rotten stinker. When I get frustrated with her and maybe raise my voice a little louder than I’d like, I worry that I’m going to crush her spirit. Am I going to be the reason she loses that spark? Will she look back at her childhood and feel like she wasn’t able to be herself? It’s a fine line, because I’m absolutely in favor of boundaries and rules and limits, but I also don’t want to squash her developing little personality.
Ah, the perils of raising children. Everyday it feels like it’s too much and not enough. Like I can’t get it right. I remind myself that tomorrow is another day, but inevitably I tell myself that the next day too. That said, even if there are no perfect days, there are perfect moments. Simple moments even. Today Georgia was thrilled to have me sit down with her and share some goldfish crackers and an apple for 20 minutes. She smiled her million dollar smile at me, cocked her head in that impish way and said “I just love you Mom.”. Well, I just love you too my Georgia.
And then there is the boy. My sweet little baby, so easy and willing to do anything to keep the day moving along. So content with life. As long as he’s fed and can be close to someone he loves, he’s a happy little dude. He’s the one I really, really want to freeze time with because he might just be my last baby. Every moment is so, so precious. I don’t think I realized it when Georgia was a baby because everything was so new and exciting that I just wanted to see what was next. But with him, oh if time could stand still, please, please, please. If I could bottle up those tiny baby sighs for a rainy day I would. The first smile, his first giggle, the way he cuddles right up onto my shoulder every time I hold him. It’s just so incredible to be needed that much. To have this tiny little person that completely relies on you.
I think about my kids a lot, more than I ever thought I would. Obviously they dominate a lot of my thoughts as my stream of consciousness writing turned to them after one short sentence. Probably because they take up so much of my time that there is little room for much else in my brain. I was thinking about this as I walked out of the baby’s room at 10:06 tonight, that it is a before dawn til after dusk job. Georgia is up at 6 and Jameson doesn’t go to bed until 10. And I like to try to get 8 hours of sleep (with a short interruption in the middle of the night to feed the baby), so that leaves pretty much no other time. None. Zero. You would think that I could have some time to myself during naps and such, but inevitably they nap at opposite times, meaning that one of them is always up and needing something. I love being at home with them, I truly, truly do. But sometimes I fantasize about going back to work just so I can have 30 minutes to eat lunch by myself and peruse the internet without being interrupted. That sounds really sad actually. I want a job because I want to slack off and surf the net? Not entirely true, but there’s a shred of truth in it.
And there it is! Excited to see what Day 2 has in store!