Being Present in Motherhood
Posted on September 26 2019
With so many things fighting for our attention it's easy to forget to be present. To cherish the moment, to take a breath, or to not check our phone for the millionth time.
We asked her how she reminds herself to stay present and her priorities as a stay-at-home mom.
"I’m a stay-at-home mom who also works from home… so present? Well sure, physically I am 24/7. But mentally? Not always.
The ping of my phone. The to-do list’s demands. That buzzer from the washer. The consuming worry about tomorrow. The lightbulb idea that needs to be written down before forgotten. These pulls (x1000 more) tend to yank me out of the here and now on a daily basis.
While these requests are certainly loud, so can be our children—AM I RIGHT? The sibling squawks. The tantrum over the blue cup vs. the red. Can we play a game? Mom, watch this! Are you watching? And always their sweet, rumbling tummies asking for a snack."
"We intrinsically know this time is fleeting (if I had $1 for every time someone said, “Enjoy it! They grow up so fast!”), and every mom surely wants to soak up each moment—sweet and hard—down to the last drop. These little people and this short season are such a gift. Yet in a world full of things and responsibilities competing for our attention, how do we actually do that? Where’s the balance?
When I was in the pit of exhaustion and failing miserably at being present in admittedly any space, my husband cleared the fog for me: “You know all that matters is our kids. So raising them? The priority of your to-do list. Keep it as #1. So at the end of the day, if that’s all you did? Count yourself successful.”
From that day forward, that’s exactly what I did."
"When my son wants to play a board game, and I have to put a pause on unloading the dishwasher? I’ll do that.
When the baby is teething, and instead of returning emails, I spend the afternoon doing ALL THE THINGS to soothe her? Success.
When my daughter grabs my hand to snuggle on the couch, I now take that as my cue to drop whatever is secondary.
Because the truth is—people over things matter.
Their souls? Of greatest importance.
Our relationships? Eternal.
This may mean we’ve got to take a step back from some commitments sucking up our time. It may look like saying no to things we otherwise would say yes to. It may be leaving our phone behind to enjoy a distraction-free walk with our kids. Or muting notifications altogether. Or even keeping a motherhood journal and recording your favorite moments of the day.
We won’t get it right all the time. We might even miss the mark every hour of every day.
But children are forgiving—and we should be too. We can start our days off with new mercies, a clean slate, and a fresh beginning—keeping what matters most at the top of our to-do list and always at the forefront: People over things."