Friday, April 12, 2013

Five-Minute Friday: Here

Five-Minute Friday is a great opportunity for a writer: the chance to write for five minutes without over-editing, backtracking or worrying about being perfect...the chance to let words flow the way we used to color back in the days before we worried about staying inside the lines. If you're a writer, you should think about joining in. (And if you don't think you're a writer, you ought to try it, anyway!)







The trouble with here is that I so often wish I were someplace else. Half-empty cups of coffee, bills, a sticky sippy cup and crumbs from at least two meals cover the table. Plastic dinosaurs, another sippy cup, a lone sock and several broken crayons litter the floor. And more crumbs. And Legos, which always seem to enter the sole of my foot at just the right angle to hurt as much as possible without leaving a mark.

When I look around here right now, it all seems so overwhelming.  Sometimes I can't even see past the mess to look into the faces of the people who made it, even though I know they need my presence and my attention more than they need our home to be perfectly clean. I worry: am I doing enough? am I doing it right? is it going to be this hard every day forever? what if I'm not cut out to be the parent they need me to be?

Here there are always going to be more questions than answers. There isn't a lot of time to sit down and think about the answers, either.

Perfectionism is what keeps me from being present here with them. I always have to be striving, always working toward something, always struggling to make improvements. I always want things to be better, and I think it's my job to always be doing something to make them that way. As long as I'm focused on what I think I should do, who I think I ought to be, where I think I should be headed, how I think I should be feeling, I'll always be exhausted, fretful, anxious, uncomfortable in my own skin.

But what if I'm wrong?
What if maybe what I need sometimes is just to rest where I already am? With them?

Things are not perfect. I'm not perfect. But I'm perfectly loved...and at the same time I will never be enough, in all the ways that matter most, I am enough already. I am the mother they need me to be.

So today, in the middle of the mess, I might as well push the Legos out of the way, spread out a blanket, and invite them to sit with me and have a picnic right here. It beats clearing off the table.

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Five Minute Friday