She’s been there first. Whether it’s teething or diapers or attitudes, she’s dealt with it. Whether it’s frustration or anger or depression, she’s felt it. Whether it’s small smiles, great weather, or overwhelming awesomeness, she’s had it.
There are so many ways I turn to Mary, and somehow, lately, I’ve been thinking of it a lot. Maybe it’s my constant seeking for the perfect mom. Maybe it’s conversations and observations I’ve had recently relating to mother-daughter relationships I just don’t understand. Maybe it’s just that season in my life.
Summer is its own challenge, one I feel like I may never master. There’s the freedom from schedules and routine, and yet, there’s the equally binding demand of “what’s next?” and “can we…?” and stuff that still needs done.
Just the other day, someone looked at me and said, “I think you’re trying to do too much.”
I was floored. I didn’t think this person had a valid point, really, in part because they don’t know me or my responsibilities all that well. And yet, sometimes an outsider is the best person to make an observation you’re too blind to see for yourself.
My first thought: define “too much.” Is it when I throw something across the room in frustration? What needs to go? How do I walk the tightrope of family needs and financial needs and my own needs?
I need to remember my priorities. I’m not convinced I am doing too much, actually, but I’m not sure I’m doing what I need to do well.
Being a work-at-home mom is a special sort of fun. I love it; I don’t think I’ll ever be able to go back to an office setting and be happy there. And when I find support from other work-at-home moms, even better. Late last week, I came across this summer survival guide and thought, “Yes! Yes! YESSSSS!”
Mary’s been there. From one mom to another, she looks at me from my kitchen windowsill, holds out her hand, and smiles. Sometimes it’s a smile of sympathy and other times it’s amused. She may be offering to carry me or reminding me to pause for a moment (or three) to just turn to God.
That phrase, “from one mom to another,” makes me think of a gentle friend, one who will point out the hard truths and then pour me more coffee and pass me some chocolate, one who always has a funny anecdote and a good book recommendation.
As I grip the rosary in my pocket or the medal around my neck, I remember that she’s not a statue, an inaccessible ideal. She’s a person, one who loves me, and she’s always pointing me the right way. She can’t help it. Will I say Yes?