Here is the thing I’ve noticed about mothering. Okay, maybe two things…okay maybe three. I’ll try to limit it to three: 1. It is hard and tiring. 2. With it comes an unhealthy dose of worrying. 3.These two things can take over your whole life.
This spring I made a choice: to be willing to go or do some of the things Chris wants to do. Not just let him go alone, but go with and do it with him.
As I am about to enter my fifth year of being a mom, I’ve realized how much I have imprisoned myself by just not being willing. I am tired. I am up most nights at least once. After we crossed into the world of three kids, I ended each day feeling as though I ran a marathon. There is little or no down time. So Saturday would roll around, Chris would come up stairs with a slightly envisioned smile and suggest we go to this new climbing spot he read about or go for a hike, or drive to the mountains, etc. He wanted to go on an adventure and he wanted to take his family along with.
And my response? I am too tired. I don’t want to deal with cranky kids who don’t get their naps. That sounds like a lot of work. Then I would move onto previously mentioned (#2) : Well, how exposed is this hike, how far is the approach to the climb? What if they fall off a mountain? What if they get bitten by a snake (I have a thing with snakes.) And my mind would fill with all sort of images of my kids being swept downstream or teetering on the edge of a cliff. And soon my 1. tiredness and 2. worry would take over my life, my mothering, and most significantly my wife-ing (if I can make up that word). I wasn’t willing to go and I was, therefore, missing a part of my husbands heart.
Recently, I’ve jumped in with the adventure mentality and I’ve seen Chris come alive in ways I never expected. And myself as well. I am learning to have fun again. And yes, it can be a lot of work. And sometimes you look at each other at the end of the day and say, “well, that didn’t work.” But often you find things you love to do as a family. And you find creative ways to make things work. And you and your partner learn how to work as a team in accomplishing these things. And every now and again, you get chased off a climb by swirling black clouds and rock breaking lightening, run down the mountain to get out of the fierce downpour, climb into your warm car, look at each other through dripping hair and muddied hands and say, “Lets get outta here!”… with a huge smile on both of your faces.
We were talking about this one day and I said, “I think as a mom it is hard to want to go cause it is so much work. I think most mom’s are not willing and continually tell their man, ‘no’.” Chris responded by saying, “You have no idea…that is exactly what happens, all the time.”
I was at a marriage retreat this last march and the pastor’s wife asked the question, “Who do you want to be for your husband?” She answered, “I want to be the one who will run away with him.” I so resonated with this. Cause when I look back at my daily dealings with Chris, often what I am being (or trying to be) is his caretaker/mother(yikes)/maid/friend/co-worker/bookkeeper/task manager. But who do I WANT to be? I want to be his partner in crime. The one who runs off with him on some crazy and wild adventure. So now I am trying to start acting like that person. And now I would ask you, who do you want to be for your husband? And are your actions in line with that?
I recently blogged on this topic over at Lessons In Semantics in a series about marriage but I thought I should share it here too. For the complete series visit www.lessonsinsemantics.blogspot.com.