It feels like a full lifetime ago that I was planning Jessie's wedding. They already had one monkey, Edison, who was already cute as can be. It's totally fitting they add to the clan! I had the chance to catch up with Jesse since her big day and she was kind enough to share with us her life- now a party of 5!
So Jesse, What's new?
In the last 5 years we have had a Wedding, three children, suffered the loss of our beloved family dog, started a new business, purchased a new home, and somehow maintained our relationship and sanity through it all. Sounds like a lot. That's because it is. My life is completely full and I am non stop from the moment our infant wakes up at 5:30 until our oldest falls asleep at 8:00. There are some days where I am completely overwhelmed and then there are a few days sprinkled in between where I feel like I could run the world.
If anyone could handle that tribe AND run the world- it's you girl! What's your trick?
Being a Mother takes a lot out of you and I feel like the most important thing I have learned along the way is that, "I need to fill up my cup, so that the love I have, can pour over onto the rest of my family." I have learned this lesson the hard way, as I believe many Mother's have. My day is so busy making sure everyone else is fed and bathed and clothed and entertained, that I forget to meet my own basic needs in that regard. I am not only responsible for my children's well being, but for my own as well. Nobody else is going to make sure Mom eats, has a shower (preferably without children and toys at my feet), and takes time to rest. It is up to me.
I vaguely remember showers without toys everyone. Worse yet, bath crayons. Someone who hates moms invented that I am sure. But they sure are crowd pleasers!
It is so easy to get overwhelmed by just how much needs to be done each day... making breakfast, packing lunches, dinner, laundry, cleaning up toys on repeat, wiping noses, wiping butts, entertaining, fixing boo boos, bath time, bottles, sippy refills, tantrums, time outs, bedtime stories, bedtime snacks, and the list goes on... but if I can take my life and my To Do List ONE DAY AT A TIME, then it seems much more manageable. I have to give myself some grace here... it takes a lot out of someone physically and emotionally, and there are times where I am very good at it. And then there are the days where Dad comes home from work and I am still in pajamas, our 18 month old is down to just a diaper and a sticky face, our four year old is melting down because he died on a video game, and our baby is frantically chewing on her pacifier because I had to feed everyone else and it's now her turn.
This is the real life stuff I deal with on most days. I am not a perfect Mom, nor do I claim to be. I try very hard to be the best Mom I can be each day, and if I fail one day, then I just try and do better the next day. It takes a whole lot of patience, grace, flexibility (emotional and physical.... have you ever tried to put a pacifier in your babies mouth while at a stop light in a rear facing car seat ?), adaptability, and the realization that most likely nothing will go according to plan.
Ah, patience. That's a virtue that I have in low supply. I wish I could learn how to make that multiply.
Well, most days I survive on caffeine and prayer, but when I look at my oldest son (4 1/2) I remember just how fast all of this is going. So... I remind myself that the dishes can wait, the laundry can wait, the organization projects can wait, but what cannot wait is the time I have now to be able to play with my children and to cherish them, even when they are standing on my last nerve.
Is there one small thing you do for you to help with the stress and weight of it all? I find the mama guilt of doing something selfish is gut wrenching, but I know you have to do it!
My go to stress reliever... hm... that's a tough one... I guess I would say my Monthly mani/pedi... alone... not the ones I drag my 4 year old to when my nails look like something from pre-historic times and I am desperate.
Pre-historic? Oh you mean like how my nails look right now. Gotcha. I guess biting off the cuticles isn't really cutting it. Ya, I should follow your lead on that one.
Motherhood is by far the hardest job I have ever had, but the rewards from THIS Career are are eternal.
I feel you sister!
Thank you for sharing your mama wisdom with me! It's been so exciting to see your family & heart grow.
Follow Jessie @jessie_letourneau
Photo credits: Epper Photograhy, Briana Santiago Photography, Claire Brown Photography