This post brought tears to my eyes. A dear friend sent it to me after my last post about expectations around Christmas. I can’t say enough about what a wonderful person she is. She’s seen me at quite possibly my lowest, and I hope I’ve shown her my highest. I love her and am so grateful for her friendship and to have her in my corner. Enjoy this guest post from MBF.
To feel or show great joy or delight
I don’t do New Year’s Resolutions; I do Birthday resolutions. I like to do things on my own agenda; anybody that knows me will agree.
However this holiday season I’ve been feeling overwhelmed by trying to fit into everyone else’s agenda and expectations. I heard a wonderful speaker on the weekend and he challenged us to think of a word for the New Year and try to use it similar to a Mantra. I chose my word early to act as some sort of an out of this world motivational force to ship me through the holidays. Probably the exact opposite of what he was suggesting it for. Either way; the word is REJOICE!
I should give you a quick background of who I am and really why I am even bothering writing this down. I good friend of mine blogs and is an amazing writer. She is a mom and works from home and blogs. Her son is one month older then my daughter and we are both working (non-maternity leave) mom’s that live only a few blocks away in this awesome suburb outside of Saskatoon. She refers to herself as Mama Bear and often makes references to her village. I am proud to say I am a part of that village in one small way or another. I will refer to myself as Mama Bear’s Friend. MBF.
I always look forward to reading her blogs because they are honest and not FB fake. You know what I mean. The cheery happy posts and smiles that you compare yourself to and wonder what on earth am I doing wrong. My child never wears two socks at the same time; often has food on her face and the only way we get pictures is because iPhones are amazing at candid’s and they are the “new thing” these days anyways.
For the most part I feel like I check off at least a general average of the “checks” on the Pinterest Perfect Mama List…however will never and never expect to get more then that.
My husband and I are career driven; but each of us has a strong belief in balance, family and faith. That being said, I struggle daily with finding a balance between being a good mom and continuing on pace with my career. There is a lot of judgment and not necessarily a lot of support between mother’s that make different choices to either stay home or work. To be honest, that has been my most surprising challenge of parent-hood.
I am ranting; sorry! I am not a writer but I swear there is a point to this….
The reason why I look forward to my MBF’s posts is because she reminds me what is real and what is important. I am not alone in this battle of balance. The day to day in parenting is hard. The small things matter.
December is a busy month for most people with festivities, shopping and to-do lists. Add in a busier work schedule and I feel like my head is spinning some days. Reading MB’s Blog was so refreshing to me tonight. However; I felt it was a cry for support or help. I wanted to do something for her but wasn’t sure what to do other then write. I am not a blogger or really a writer. But I have a few degrees so figured I could bust something out. This is for my friend. To support her in her continued struggles and remind her that her Blog is important maybe not just to her; but to me and I am sure other mama’s out there.
Mama Bear. The small things you are doing everyday matter! Rejoice in them. They add up to VERY big things. You get to have your son at home with you full-time. He get’s to see and will understand one day that is important for his partner in life to have an identity as a Mom as well as a career person. He will understand your small daily sacrifices one day and all of those small things will add up to him being a very successful young man. Not just in his own career, but in his relationships with his future family and friends. He will see how he is a part of a village.
So, this holiday season I am going back to my word of REJOICE. I will be happy in whatever I am doing. If I am not; then I am not doing it. Compromises I have made are no Christmas letter, no decorations on the tree (the tree is up and the lights are still awesome), no Christmas lights outside (bought a strobe light thing-took 3 minutes to set up), no Christmas baking (did a work cookie exchange and made this wafer thing that tasted delicious and took 45min), no gifts to my hubby (we are going to save and put money into a new vehicle in the New Year) and minimize my Christmas shopping (80% has been done online-God Bless Cyber Monday)!
Christmas makes me so happy. I love people. I love conversation, food, memories and having so many of my loved ones from very far away being all under one roof. I don’t think if I baked some special dessert or bought my uncle the best gift ever would change any of the above.
So I will REJOICE. If I make a decision to do something Christmasy I am going to make a choice to find joy in it. If it is not bringing me joy then I am not going to do it. Because that is what it should be about.
I am going to do the small things that lead to big things. I am often overwhelmed with getting to an end result (competitor in me). That being said; my Holiday Season resolution this year will be to not despise the small beginnings and instead rejoice in myself to see that I have allowed the work to even begin.
Mama Bear. I hope you can use these words to encourage you to keep going (and perhaps as a break from a post in a few weeks). That way something can go on your blog and you don’t have to worry about writing anything.
Merry Christmas Dar.
Just one Mama of many in your village
Ps. I expect a Christmas gift…in a mug, at your house, hot (or microwaved to be honest)…with flavored creamer!