I was thinking of something to write in honor of Mother's day weekend. This post from last September came to my mind. It was called "I Love My Job". When I wrote it, we had just started our homeschool studies for the Junior year and Christopher hadn't started driving on his own.
Now we're in the process of finishing those very lessons and he's been driving long enough to give me heart failure a few times when he has come in late. How quickly time goes... So in honor of Mother's Day, here's a repeat that says what I feel about...mothering. :)
I Love My Job
I quite often have people ask me why I spend so much time driving my son around to his activities. I have an older car, a chronic illness and I live in the country so why aren't I home taking it easy? Why do we teach him instead of sending him to school? There are experts trained in the field of ADHD. I always give the same answer, "That's my job". What am I expected to do when I still have a training age kid at home (who is almost six feet tall, shaves, and knows how to build his own computer...but he's still my boy).
I confess to being bewildered by some of the questions I do get because the happiest times of my life have been when I was "doing something" with my children. So often, I feel like people are asking me when I'm going to start living my life. They don't seem to understand that this is my life, one I've chosen and I'm quite happy with, thank you. Homeschooling happens to be our way of life now just as the public schools were part of our family with our first child.
I get exhausted and sometimes I get a little frustrated but that doesn't mean I don't enjoy what I do. I loved the baby cuddles, the toddler teaching, the delight when a little one learns to tie their shoe or write their name. There is nothing like a child bringing you a book, curling up in your lap and asking you to read this week's "favorite" story...again.
I love the way little girls swirl when they put on a new dress. I love the look on a preteens face when they master a new skill. I love the secrets at Christmas and baking times in the kitchen. I enjoy teenagers. The best theological discussions in which I've ever been a part have been with my husband and children. I even let them think they're right once in awhile. :)
That's why I love my job. I spent years in the corporation, working long hours and giving it the best of my time each day. No project I worked on at that time exists today. Perhaps I affected a life for good but I won't know this side of eternity. Every moment I've spent as a mother is evident when I look at my children. Every time I opened my mouth with wisdom, precept upon precept, a bit of the values my husband and I hold dear was instilled in that child. (Not that I showed wisdom every time I opened my mouth, I've been known to apologize to both my children for words spoken when I was cranky.)
I was not happy this morning when the alarm rang at 4:50. I was not happy when we were getting the remainder of his things ready at the last moment (why didn't he tell me he needed a blue pen and yellow highlighter before we were going out the door?). I was not happy driving in the dark in near zero visibility (I have night blindness) to meet up with a sweet friend who had gone an hour out of her way so our sons could go to a debate tournament together. Loving my job does not equate to happiness every day. My job is hard work.
There is at least one benefit of having children twelve years apart. The second time around, you know how quickly the years fly by. When you're frustrated over potty training, disaster area rooms, helping with math, monitoring TV, monitoring the Internet, getting to know their friends, living out values, driving to athletic events, teaching classes, driving to friend's houses and picking them up...in short, living life with kids...you don't think of the day when they won't be a part of your everyday life.
The toddler will become the Marine, the little girl swirling in her pretty dress will be the bride, the child playing Legos will go off to engineering college. I am determined this second time around to enjoy every moment. The next two years will go by quickly.
I often end my e-mails to friends with a quote from one of my favorite poems, Stopping By Woods on A Snowing Evening...I must end because I have "miles to go before I sleep". I figure I'll have plenty of time to sleep late when there is no longer a kid in the house. In the meantime, I will be relieved when he can drive himself part of the time (and I'll pray a lot) and I'm off to bed before I fall asleep on the computer keyboard.
Image artist...Arthur John Elsley