As summer melts into blurry days of sun and heat and fun, my mind continues it’s decay of sorts. Those moms who stay home with their kids all day can probably understand this dementia…as every minute seems to roll into endless interactions of constant instructions and admonitions and praise and encouragement of the children that abound. And even though the memories and lovely events stream with smiles and glow with excitement, it becomes quite the contrary to the adult mind. Any adult would start to realize the slow destruction of our long history of years gone by where our brains were building wisdom and intellect to store in their lovely fast moving and stimulating brain cells. (Some moms may be younger, but as for me- well, I’m old) As each day goes on….one cell falls asleep, and another, and another….as though starvation ensues through the fast of every day life with little ones.
Yes, there are wonderful play dates with interrupted conversation among friends. Yes, there are wonderful family moments of cookouts and celebrations of sorts. There are lovely encouraging conversations and expressive bonding between close friends. There are church events and social activities that are always fulfilling. Why sure there are the family vacations and fantastic excursions that brighten the soul and light up our spirit. However….it’s the mind that is neglected. Not on purpose, but it gently sneaks up on you as the days and sometimes years go by as a mother. What inspires us to learn? What motivates us to seek wisdom and discover newfound joy in learning? Are we just too busy and immersed in “motherhood” to look at the possibility of intellectual growth? Are we just too tired? Mush. I call it mush.
The decaying brain is a possible sacrifice to balance out all the fulfilling joys and challenges of motherhood. So many new ideas and multiple forces are with us and against us as we pursue the parenting journey. I believe that may be what leads us to another path of survival, as it is incredibly demanding of our time and energy. Who has a minute to dive into some educating book or class? For example, just writing this blog….I have been interrupted four times and I am only on my third paragraph! I can’t always blame the time and energy on my unwillingness to learn. I have become lazy in intellect. I confess this with honesty and down right apathy. The only books I want to read are either books that grow my spirit or books that guide my parenting. All those cool classic novels look to be in another language…and all those “how to” books look exhausting to me. Sad. (okay, add two more interruptions…)(one STILL going on!!! AaHHHH!)
For those mothers who work, I not only commend you, but I sometimes envy you. You are forced to stimulate your brain outside of the motherhood school, which I am sure can be difficult, yet liberating. You are all amazing at juggling the mom thing with the workload, something that can only be a test of your child-rearing world to it’s extreme. I absolutely applaud you!
As for us “home bodies”, the stimulation we sacrifice is most valuable and I’m sure it will be cherished for years to come as our “little ones” grow and we hold on to the memories of all these blurry days and moments…
For now, I will accept where I am. As I struggled recently for days about my lack of desire to learn, and possibly realizing that I have accomplished nothing this month other than doing “summer” with the kids…I realize that sometimes just being a mom from day to day is okay. Being content in the journey without always having additional “pursuits” may be fulfilling enough. Constant parenting is an ongoing education isn’t it? It just has a different level of existence….
For now, I will leave you with a reflection of my son and I having just that…. true intellectual stimulation at it’s best. A 2 minute piece of my world that continues all day and every day.
“Honey, grab the towel please…”
“Which towel mommy?”
“The blue towel, the one you always use honey”
“The light blue towel mommy?”
“Yes dear, the light blue towel!”
“Why does she get two towels and I only get one mommy??”
“I don’t know why she has two…”
“Mommy, that’s not fair!!”
“I know, did you get your towel yet?”
“Is it the towel on the toilet seat?”
“YES! RIGHT ON TOP dear…”
“The tippy top mommy?”
“YES…..the light blue towel on the tippy top of the toilet seat” (Lord, help me)
“Oh, why do I always have the blue towel mommy? Mommy? Mommy!”
“Yours is blue and hers is pink”
“I want two towels! Can I have two towels since she does?”
“What are these towels for? Mommy, I need a towel! Which one do I take?”