Unschooling: Living Without School; Living Free Range-Freedom to Learn What One Wants When One Wants

Thursday, January 22, 2015

What Happened to Me?

I can't sleep. I'm overwhelmed. The house is a mess-working on a project. And I have a ton of stuff that needs to get done tomorrow. ... So I started praying. It always melts away my anxieties. But as I was praying I began crying. I remembered today was the anniversary of Roe v. Wade. And I got scared. I began begging God to keep my child healthy. Begging him for children to stop suffering from illness, trauma, and death. Begging him for Peace. I think of my S going through a traumatic experience. And the thought alone is too great to bear. What happened to me?

In highschool, well since I was really young, all the way up to the very moment J and I decided to have a baby, I never wanted to be a Mom. I wanted to be a lawyer. Or, toward the end, I wanted to be in the army. But I never wanted to get married and I certainly never wanted to be a Mom. I was my own person. I could get lost in hours of drill and mindless workouts in ROTC. I commanded and competed with every drill team they had. I got lost in research and debate. I knew my goals and I pursued them with a fiery passion. I kept my eye on the prize and got what I wanted. I was a true career woman headed down a true career path. (I have the dual seal, highest honors, top 25 in the class diploma to prove it.)

But when J asked me if I wanted a baby, I told him yes. I don't know why. Maybe I began romanticizing the idea of having a family just because it gave my life more meaning and purpose than I felt I had at that moment. (Highschool doesn't exactly fulfill some people.) Maybe I felt a need for control over my life. Maybe I just needed to be loved. I don't know. But I do know one thing. When I said yes, my life changed forever, for the better.

What happened to me after that was a slow, but inevitable change. I became a Mom. Three months after "trying," I became pregnant. Just three months. I was excited to have a child, but when she was born, I didn't have that overwhelming sense of falling in love most Moms have. My endorphins didn't hit overdrive like they should have. I did love her. But I didn't realize what it meant to have a child. I finished school and I loved my S the entire time. I loved holding her, rocking her to sleep, rubbing her cute baby body with lotion. I loved being a Mom.

But it wasn't until I started staying home that I really changed. I don't know why or what happened, but I changed. I began seeing my S in a different light. I began longing for all the things I felt like I had been missing. I can't quite put my finger on what I felt like I was missing, but something had been missing.

My first day as a stay at home Mom, I played with my daughter and connected with her on a level I never had before. We cooked with pretend food. Bathed a baby doll in her baby bath. Crawled around the house together on our hands and knees. Toddlers were certainly fun.

And as she grew, I watched her. We played cars. We played in the dirt. We dressed up. We had tea parties. We learned together.

And when S was 2, I decided to homeschool. And again, I saw parenting in a whole new light. At 4 we discovered purposeful parenting. Long story short, another light appeared.

And we still play cars and dolls. We read books and make silly You Tube videos. All the while I can't help but think that these are the moments I HAVE to savor most. They will be gone much too soon. Yesterday is but a memory. And tomorrow is no guarantee.

It is like God had been leading me through this whole parenting thing, telling me exactly what to do, what is next, because I never had that Mother instinct inside of me as a child. I never wanted to be a Mom...But...

I love my life. My family. Every busy moment. Every learning day. Every LAZY day. Every time I lay on the couch with them and snuggle or play games or even hike a trail.

To think I never wanted children. That my S wouldn't be here had my love stricken highschool sweetheart not uttered those fateful words. Never in a million years did I think I would be a Mom, let alone a Stay at Homeschool Mom. Never did I think that the most important time of the day for me would be the mornings when I wake up my sweet S and we snuggle up and read together. Never did I think that I would be married at 17 and still get butterflies when I receive a text from my Husband. Never did I think that I would be excited for 4:30 when I hear the phone ring and it is his "off work." Never did I think I would long for another sweet child. That I would be willing to suffer through every ounce of pain from labor, every minute of lost sleep, every moment of sore boobs. But every bit of this is true.

I worry though. My mind always worries that God will "punish" me for my past mistakes and I will lose my child before they are born. Or even lose them after I have had them and loved them and hugged them and raised them for a period of time. And even still I worry that I will someday lose my S. Maybe these are normal Mommy worries. Maybe these are not. But I do know one thing. God chose me, right now, to mother my living child and my lost child. And if I am hearing His Call correctly, a child that has yet to come.  He has changed me for the good. From textbooks to storybooks. From career driven to volunteering. From straight A student to Homeschool Mom. From hating the world to loving a child who is my world.

For 15 years I thought my path was something it was not. I was preparing for my future as a prominent professional woman, but nothing could have prepared me for the change that I was going to make over the next 7 years of my life. Amazing. Just 7 years. What a difference it can make.

What happened to me? Somewhere along the way, I fell in Love. With God. With my Husband. With being a Mom.

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