This summer has been a really beautiful one so far. I feel so thankful for the long days that wind to a close with kids playing and screaming outside with neighborhood friends and afternoons spent at the pool getting brown (the kids – not me. #redheadproblems) and splashing in the water. I feel like we are in a really special season of life and some days I want to just marinate in the sepia toned goodness of it all.
Don’t get me wrong. It’s exhausting, too. Toddler tantrums and teenage angst collide into me some afternoons and those days can be hard. I grump and whine about it on Facebook and commiserate with friends in similar stages of life. I will never be one to pretend this life of ours is perfect or easy or without its challenges. But it is good. Oh, so good.
Sometimes I think back on the days before I was someone’s mom and reflect on what I thought motherhood would feel like. I assumed I would be making lunches and washing clothes and helping with homework but none of my estimations of motherhood ever included the amazing camaraderie that I would experience with other moms. In my short sightedness I tend to think this is due to the digital age and our ability to connect with moms on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. I read funny tweets from other moms and think how lucky I am to be a mom in these days where we can share our experiences so easily. And I am. And sharing is easy now, that is true.
But, the more I read and reflect and think about this sacred experience the more I realize that this role of motherhood has always been one that connects women. A shared experience of beauty and exhaustion and love and frustration. A beautiful journey of wholeness and incompleteness all at once. Some of my richest experiences have to do with being a mom. Not just with my children, but through bonding with other moms who are a part of this ocean of feeling that comes with being the guardian of the hearts of their children.
On days when I just cannot even last one more second with the level of craziness in my house, when I am exhausted from all these sweet beloved hands pulling and grabbing me, and the unending chaos that is a homeschoolers home at 5:00 on a Thursday afternoon I am blessed to know that a call, text, or FB post will result in multiple offers of wine delivery, hugs, or rescue. I have sent children to play at a neighbor friend’s house, had wine deliveries, and dinner offered to us on days when motherhood just seemed to be too much. Likewise we have shared our home with neighborhood refugees whose mother’s needed a moment to themselves. It is a give and take. A community of understanding. One I am blessed to be included in.
Modern day parenthood is not without its challenges. But it is not without its beauty either. I am thankful for these days and moments and summers full of chaos, craziness, and so much happiness. Thank you to all the moms, both past and present, who have made this journey of mine possible. I owe much of my enjoyment of these sweet summer days to your willingness to share the burden of motherhood with me. And those super important deliveries of wine at 3:00 on a weekday afternoon!