Sometimes the toughest part about being a mom is finding value in the little things. I went from a fast-paced, high-stress job working with very large companies to spending my days tracking down teeny-tiny socks and a giraffe stuffed-animal named Lovey. This morning was particularly exciting, as I removed – with a surgeon’s precision – stubborn boogies from a little nose.
As moms, we are always on call. Always ready to leap into action. Always sleeping with one eye open, smiling despite the fear, tending with care no matter our exhaustion, and feeling so deeply that our hearts ache at times.
But yet it’s still so easy for us to feel as though we aren’t doing enough. The laundry, the meals cooked, the kisses on chubby fingers caught in drawers, the piling blocks on top of each other for one, two, and then three more times… It so easily feels small.
So much is happening outside the four walls we manage. So many big things are at stake. And yet there we are, sitting on the floor, holding a warm little body close to our chest, and reading out loud about dancing pigs and skating llamas. It feels good most days, but then there are the moments that leave us questioning our sanity.
It’s the million-dollar question… Can I survive even one more day of this beautiful monotony? Like many moms, I have to work a few days a week, but my every other waking moment is encompassed by a little guy who stole my heart.
But then I remember, whether it be in the moment or later that night as I’m sitting in a quiet house before bed… The little boy sitting on my lap today will be a grown man all too soon. And he’ll go out into the world having been influenced – for better or for worse – by the parents who raised him. It is my opportunity now to teach him how to love, to work hard, to give, and to defend what’s right.
Some might say that to find meaning in giving so much to another is self-demeaning. But I find it to be fulfilling in ways that a career never could hope to be. There really is no greater privilege than to know that you shot light into the darkness by mentoring a child and teaching them how to be good.
Sometimes the toughest part about being a mom is finding value in the little things. But then I remember… The little socks I fold, the grilled cheese I slice, and the rubber ducky I carefully place in the tub will one day be just a memory. It will be a part of the warm, safe home that my son – now a grown man – will look back on with fondness. And I don’t want to be missing from that memory, just because I felt as though I needed to be a bigger part of the world around me.
If I’m a positive part of his world, then I will have made a difference. And that is a very, very big thing to me. And if I train him right, it will be a very, very big thing to the world around us too. 🙂