September 04, 2009

Big Shoes to Fill

Originally I took this photo to show that it was clearly time to go back to school since my kids had worn out shoes.  However, it was supposed to be a before and after shot, and I never got around to taking pictures of their new shoes.  Such is the way around here.  Good intentions, possibly a good idea, no time to get around to execution.  

Instead my thoughts today, after spending the first week of school relishing the quiet of my home from 8:30 to 3:00 are what kind of parent am I?  Am I glad to have these old empty shoes in the house?  Glad to be sending off the kids in those new vans?  It's a recurring theme on this blog I suppose.  I mean, there are mothers out there that are always saying "I just really miss my kids when they go back to school" and I want to be that kind of parent.  The first day of kindergarten when all the moms cry.  I sigh.  A sigh of relief and then I skip out the door merrily on my way.  In part I do miss them.  I miss the funny things that happen when they are around, I miss the helping hands, I miss reading to them (something I have recently resurrected).  I miss the bike rides we took together, hanging out at the pool, and is it sad that I can't come up with any more things? Anyways, here's what I don't miss.  The fighting, the sassing, the noise, the need for me to entertain, the nagging them to get their jobs done, the constant messes.  Sigh! (more sighing).  No problems coming up with that list now is there?  

This just leads to me feeling like I could really be better as a mom.  I used to have this friend that I served with in the women's organization at church.  She was the relief society's president and I was her counselor.  When we would have meetings at her home, her children would periodically interrupt with something.  It didn't matter how annoying the thing was she always had a pure look of joy to see them wander in on her face.  Her answers were always sincere and kind.  I could just feel the love she had for her kids and felt a bit guilty.  But she was the kind of person you just couldn't help but want to emulate.  Probably why she was our president and we continue to be friends to this day 10 years later.  

I can say that I am sincerely glad to see my kids first thing in the morning.  And also the first thing when they walk through the door after school.  And I try and show them that.  But there are lots of times when I just want to do my own thing and not be bothered.  Parenthood has a way of forcing you into unselfish behavior.  I think it's our decision however how we will act.  Disgruntled or loving.  Being loving all the time?  Those are some big shoes to fill.


Dallas said...

I feel you there even though I only have a two year old and a 4 month old. I find myslef in this circle of feeling quilty for not spending enough time with my kids to thinking they need to learn how to handle things themselves or entertain themselves sometimes. They need that. When I do then I start feeling guilting again. I guess these feelings are probably normal with motherhood. What a great experience it is even though it is very hard, guess you just have to find the balance.

Kristina P. said...

I always assume that I will be thrilled when my hypothetical children go back to school.

Tracy Purdy said...

It was all I could do to not bop number one and number two in the heads today! I also called number one some not very nice names in my head. You are a GOOD MOM, K. The wonderful kids you've raised show it. Besides, I think Natalie might have been an android. Nobody is THAT nice. ;-)

Kelly said...

Thank you Trace. You are a good mom too. Hang in there!

literaqueen said...

I think if we were all genuinely happy to see our children all the time, we'd either be a) translated or b) sitting in a little padded room with a straitjacket.

Okay, not that I have any children to judge that by. I like sitting in the pew behind the multi-children families, though, and knowing I'm not the one dealing with the raisin boxes flying through the air-- but then I kinda want it (the kids, not the raisin box).

Jeff said...

So, I think you were WAY too generous with that RS pres. of yours. I hear her kids play with matches! (On Labor Day anyway, esp. while up the canyon);)

I am trying every day to be the kind of mom you all ready are.

Love ya,

Kelly said...

I used to play with matches in the mountains. They must be way special!

Thanks Natalie

Parenting Ink said...

Thanks for reminding me that I shouldn't feel guilty for sending my son to "preschool" when he's 2 1/2, and that I shouldn't feel like a bad mom for liking the 8 hours of "quiet" time a week. After 5 years of motherhood and part-time working, I deserve it, right?
It's always nice to read a new writer. I'm glad to read your blog.