Yesterday I caught up with a friend of mine from a previous position. We both work for a large company and about 4 years ago our paths found us in the same department. We both left at the same time for different positions around the same time and had not made time to catch up, until yesterday. After the normal catch up about jobs, I asked her how her son was doing. She shared some details with me about her son’s difficulty in school the previous year. Then she said, “always listen to your mom gut.”
Always listen to your mom gut.
She told me that during this tough time last year, several people told her that what her son was going through was “normal” stuff and that she didn’t need to be concerned. But she knew different and didn’t listen to her gut. She was lamenting that she did not act quick enough and follow her own intuition. Often we don’t regret things we do, but things we don’t do.
Always listen to your mom gut.
November 1st has always made me a little melancholy. Growing up Halloween was almost as exciting as Christmas. Something about the day after Halloween and seeing the pumpkins and knowing it, Halloween, was over just makes my heart a little sad. The anticipation of what I was going to get to pretend to be for one night. Of course, the candy, helped, too.
My Mom made me amazing Halloween costumes, and my Dad would take me and my cousin trick or treating in what felt like the biggest subdivision in the world. We walked for miles! One of my favorite Halloween memories was dressing up a She-Ra. I wish I had a picture of that Halloween. I remember feeling that I was invincible dressed up as a superhero.
Flash-forward to today. I’m feeling the same melancholy. It is November 1st, and Halloween is over. We didn’t carve a pumpkin, and I feel good about it. We had a great Halloween, which lasted more than one night, (Trunk or Treat and a very little bit of trick or treating) but the same feeling of Halloween coming to a close weighs on me.
Lessons learned from Halloween:
- We didn’t carve a pumpkin. We did plenty of other fun activities.
- We didn’t go to a pumpkin patch. We didn’t miss it.
- My girls didn’t pick out their costumes. In fact, this may be my best parenting advice for Halloween for new parents. Don’t set the expectation that the kids can pick out what they will be for Halloween. You may disagree with me. But we do it a little different – it’s a fun time when I unbox their outfit (that I have scoured the internet to find), and they have no idea that most children pick out what they will be for Halloween.
We didn’t carve a pumpkin, and I’m ok with it.
So many of the things that I post on social media make things appear that life is perfect. But it’s not.
However, focusing on what is good helps us stay positive and setting an example for others around us that good is the most important. When we focus on the good, we’ll see more of the good. Conversely, when we focus on the bad, that’s what we will see.
Today I was focused on how tired and spent I was. It has been a trying few weeks. Then I heard about a co-worker who had passed. She had children younger than mine.
Yesterday was not perfect.
Yesterday I was tired.
Yesterday is over.
Today was not perfect.
Today I hugged my girls a little tighter.
Today I was glad we were not perfect.
Tomorrow will be better.
Tomorrow is for the perfect.
Tomorrow always has hope.
This headband has been a permanent fixture for Lizzie over the past two weeks. She has slept with it. Played with her baby dolls with it. Ate with it. In fact, she has worn it so much that when a friend commented on it at church Sunday night it didn’t look out of place. Oh, to be a four year old.
Wednesday was an epically bad day for Bug at school. School tends to run in week which are really good and weeks which are really bad. This week has not been so good. Since Wednesday was church night for us, I decided to have Bug go to class with me as part of her punishment. I gave her a piece of paper and a word to listen for and told her to make a mark on her paper for every time she heard that word and that seemed to work well. I got a chuckle from her a few minutes into class when the teacher asked a question and I answered it, correctly. She leaned over and said, “Mom, you are really good.” Not only did I laugh but most of those sitting around us.
Sometimes I feel like I am in the glory years of parenting. Seems like each day is perfect and then we have another and it’s perfect, too. Sure there are plenty of not so great a days but those a very few compared to the good.
At our last check up at the pediatrician office, she told me to enjoy every minute, that these were the years that I would think about for the next 30 years.
I believe it.
Me: Please hurry, I have training to get to today.
Bug: What’s training?
Me: It’s where you learn, kind of like school for grown ups.
Bug: Why do you need to go?
Me: So I can learn more.
Bug: What are you learning?
Bug: What is leadership?
Me: It’s where you learn how to be a good boss.
Bug: What’s a boss.
Me: It’s kind of like your teacher at school, she’s the boss when you are in class.
Bug: Is God your boss?
That’s exactly it.