Kids are full of energy, always exploring and changing. My boys are willing to take chances, try new sports, and run into the unknown fully expecting to be amazed and changed for the better. Maybe this is childhood naivety or maybe this is how we were all suppose to be throughout adulthood. Somewhere along the way, we lost our ability to change. We become fixed in our ways, unwilling to take chances and afraid of the unknown. Fear holds us back and our “personality” defines our actions.
Let me explain. I’m an introvert. To recharge is to sit in my room doing whatever I want at the end of the week without my kids or husband around. As a mom of three, wife of one, I’m around people all day and all I want is to be alone. This does not mean I don’t like spending time with my family and friends. It simply means I need breaks to feel fully available to love them. Thankfully my husband is a great supporter in my mini breaks.
But, as a mom we need to sacrifice for our families. There have been multiple occasions where I do this, and you know what? I’m always grateful I step out in faith, put my wants to the side, and step on fears head as I climb up that mountain with my kids and husband.
Recently Elsa had her adenoids removed. Her first sleep study was at 8 weeks old. She has always had obstructive sleep apnea. With a daily shot of growth hormone, everything grows a bit quicker including the adenoids. We decided at 9 months to see an ENT which confirmed our suspicions of enlarged adenoids. A week after Elsa’s first birthday I found myself back at the hospital. Most would say this was too young for this surgery, but for her it would be life changing.
Being in the hospital again was a little like PTSD. Let’s go back to two months after Elsa was born. I found myself grocery shopping with Elsa in tow and hearing the intercom over my head. Although they were calling for a store clerk my heart began to race and panic set in flowing through my limbs. The similarity of “code blue” and rescue teams racing through the hospital hallways and the store clerk being called sent my body into preservation mode down aisle 11. Yet, I had a baby in the cart and people counting on me to keep going. Stepping through, not pushing the feelings aside, I moved through the thoughts and pain. Back at the hospital, heading into pre-op, my heart quicken but was able to overcome just looking at Elsa. She was at peace. She knew I would take care of her. She knew she was safe, and so did I.
Her surgery was a complete success. In our recovery room Elsa was resting as nurses took vitals and welcomed another young girl, not more than 10 years old, into her bed. The curtain divider gives a false sense of security, unseen but fully heard. I could hear the girl complain of pain and being very tired. Her mom pushed her to eat something so they could leave quickly. The poor girl had her tonsils and adenoids removed and just wanted to rest. Her mother’s tone of voice was rushed and uncomfortable. In the girls obedience she ate a few bites of food and quickly went back to sleep. Not more than a half hour later she vomited. The nurse was patient and had a calming presence but the mother was irritated and condemning. The mother left her baby girl for more than 20 minutes after this incident to have a smoke break. The mom was afraid, her daughter needing rest and compassion, a loving person to rest in security.
You see, as a mom, you have to step out of your comfort zone. In one way or another being a mom changes you. I guess you have to decide if it will change you for the better or for the worse. When my kids need me, eyes reflecting back fear or insecurity, doubt or sadness, I see my own fears. I see my own doubt. Being a mom is about walking through those feelings of insecurity and being our kids foundation. We have to step up to the plate. Fear will be there. Feelings of panic will be familiar friends but that won’t stop me from being the mom my kids need. It’s not just Elsa that makes me face my fears. The boys often want to be out playing with friend when I’d rather be at home. But being a mom means I put my kids before my wants in life and make myself feel uncomfortable. I’ve never regretted putting my feelings to the side when I can watch my boys thrive socially with their friends.
My prayer for new moms is to embrace the change, roll with the tides. Step out of your comforts. Your kids need you. Raise the sail riding the tides for your kids. They’re just as afraid but they are looking to you mom.