My brain is on overload lately. The school year is over next week and I am readying myself for the full time mommy job this summer. As usual, I want my kids to be happy, learn some new skills, have fun, but most of all, to just feel normal. This is always my hope. I want to have fun with my kids. I want my kids to enjoy their childhood, but not be spoiled. Most of all, I want that gaping hole in their hearts to continue to heal. I want my gaping hole to continue to heal too.
I love summer. I love spending time with my family. Since being widowed, both these things are more difficult. Summers were relaxing when Dave was alive. Most weekends were spent taking care of the household duties together and then lounging poolside. It really was blissful for me. I really, really miss it. I know I can’t go back to those days, but I would really like to find some relaxation and bliss.
I love my kids. I, like most moms, start the summer hopeful. I am hopeful that our days will be filled with all those great expectations in my head. We will work on household stuff – cleaning rooms, etc. We will have trips to the library and other fun places around us. We will swim in the pool, work in the yard and enjoy it! Well, I haven’t achieved this summer bliss yet. So, as summer approaches, I am hoping again. I am hoping that the anger my little one has been experiencing will melt away with more family time. I am hoping that my big boy, now a teen, will embrace more responsibility. I know, I know…dream, dream, dream!
So I’m thinking. Here we go again! What have I learned from the summers gone by? What have I learned about how my family is operating right now? What can I do to stave off my own disappointment in myself when things don’t live up to my grand dreams of summer bliss?
Well, this year thank God, my finances will be more manageable. I will be able to provide a few pennies toward some out of the home activities. I think that this will bring the kids less boredom and me a bit more time for me to hit my to-do list. I will also promise myself that I will be more patient with them and with myself. I swear, it is mostly my disappointment in myself that leads to my own anguish. I really beat myself up sometimes. I remember being a more patient and forgiving parent when I was a co-parent, not a sole parent. I will promise myself to remember that it is not being super mom that is important, but being present to the moment – whether that is with my kids or just by myself – that is where I will find some joy. I will try to be the example of the person I hope my kids will become, not the crazy woman nagging them to do things my way.
So, come on summer, bring it on! I am joyfully anticipating your return. I am ready to pull out my patience and try again to be the parent and guide I am meant to be. I am ready to let go of my expectations (well, some of them) and maybe, maybe, have some fun along the way. I am ready to heal some more. I am ready to let my kids be who they are and face their joyful energy and their struggles right along side them. I am ready for normal to come back and stay for a while…no matter what that looks like in our post-normal lives.