Friday, February 15, 2008

hi, my name is...what's my name, again?

It's been awhile since I've written and though I could give excuses such as "I just had a baby!" to explain my long absence, the real reason is that my thoughts of late have been a little muddled and lacking creativity. So if this post seems random and disorganized, please know that I'm processing a mountain of thoughts that have accumulated over the past 5 1/2 weeks and are now avalanching their way out. Here goes...

Unconsciously, I think I've been trying to figure out where I fit into this new role as "Mother." (Doesn't just the name sound daunting and intimidating?) Even though I've been able to lay claim to this title for over 5 weeks, I am just now "feeling it". No one told me it would take this long before I'd feel comfortable considering myself "Mother." From everyone's comments, I assumed I would just slip into the role naturally, without any confusion as to where "I" come in. What I mean by that is this: Pre-Ainsley (from here on out, PA) I knew who I was and what sorts of roles and activities characterized my life. I was wife, daughter, sister, friend, employee, co-worker, neighbor. I took care of the house, cooked, worked, hung out with Heath, enjoyed many creative outlets. Adding "Mother" to my established list threw a wrench in things, to say the least. Suddenly I had become feeder, bather, diaper changer, put-er to bed, story teller, get the picture - a whole new list of activities and roles which til now were altogether unfamiliar to me. During those first weeks, my days and nights were quite consumed with feeding, waking, diapering, and playing with Ainsley. I had neither time nor energy to think much about my PA activites like cooking, cleaning, working, reading, shopping, going for walks, being creative, hanging out with friends. Was the new role "Mother" supposed to trump everything now? Are my PA activities and roles supposed to go into hibernation until the empty nest period?

Only in the past several days have I been able to begin processing all this to discover again how it fits together. True, I've added "Mother" to the top of my list of roles (after child of God and wife), but the PA me that I knew is still there. I still like to read, paint, scrapbook, cook, decorate, sew, crochet. My heart is still refreshed by creativity, deep friendships, a good book, and a cup of coffee. I am still interested in a great bargain, in hunting down the perfect gift, in trying new & different recipes. I am still Me. Me just also happens to be "Mother" to a precious baby girl named Ainsley. And I'm so glad to discover that I am and can be both! I love the new "Mother" emotions I'm experiencing - hurting when she's in pain, glee when she's happy, relief when she falls asleep, anticipation of her next milestone, the desire to protect her, hope that she'll understand her need for a Savior, pride in her accomplishments, and a deeper trust that the One who made her and gave her to me loves her more than I ever could. I love the idea of teaching her how to tie her shoes, color in the lines, bake cookies, and write a research paper. But most of all, I love that I've been given the awesome joy and responsibility to teach and train this little one to be a godly woman who will be a refreshing light in this dark world.

Hi, my name is Kristen, and I am a Mother.


Keenan said...

Everybody together now:

"Hi, Kristen ..."

Horn herd mom said...

What an eloquent view of motherhood you've written. I think you've summed it up very well and am impressed that you are able to do that just 5 1/2 weeks into the job! 7 years past my first and I'm still trying to grasp what it means!