More on motherhood

Before I had four kids I responded to emails. 

Before I had four kids I did projects and put up decorations for the holidays.

Before I had four kids I was on time to appointments.  (Haha, who am I kidding with that one?)

Before I had four kids I returned phone calls. 

Before I had four kids I kept my house clean. 

Before I had four kids I wrote regular blog posts.

I’m feeling a little overwhelmed these days.  I’m accepting a new normal with a house that is only mostly clean and hobbies that must be set aside.  In my selfish moments I resent that I don’t have spare time for my personal interests.   On Sunday Richard and I watched a couple conference talks that we missed from the Saturday afternoon session.  There was a quote in Elder Anderson’s talk that pierced me to the core. 

  “Motherhood… is not something to do if you can squeeze the time in. It is what God gave you time for.”

The quote is from Rachel Jankovic, a Christian blogger.  If that quote pierced me, her entire post shredded me.  She both empathized with me and inspired me.  Her thoughts articulated exactly how I feel but her gentle rebuke exposed and chastened me.  I love this woman, a stranger to me, for being a source of guidance outside my regular, often underappreciated, sources of guidance.  I’m so far from the ideal she sets forth, obviously all the things I listed above rank higher than my calling as a mother.  But she has given me courage that I’m not alone and reminded me of the value of children, even [or perhaps especially] my children. 

6 thoughts on “More on motherhood

  1. I KNOW that all things listed above don't rank higher than your calling as a mother. I watch you and I can see how much you love motherhood. You may FEEL resentful at times (who doesn't?) but your ACTIONS reflect how much you love your family.

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  2. so i live in sunny la, have a phd, am a college professor, and sleep in 6 days a week… i think you and i live antithetical lives, but i will tell you, i do all the things i do, not instead of motherhood, but in lieu of. as an educator, i can only hope there are more mothers like you out there, and that i someday get their children in class. love you and your blog, jojo.

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  3. Although I don't get to see you interacting with your four children, I remember the day you had Cameron. I got to be one of the first to see the joy on your face at being a mother and the love you felt for this new baby. You were so excited and took your role so seriously. I doubt any of that has changed, and has probably increased. You are a wonderful person and I'm lucky to have such a friend.

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  4. Hi, Jo! I was just catching up on your blog/life! Thanks for the post. I enjoyed the thoughts by Rachel as well. It helps to keep things in perspective. Hope you and the family are doing well:)

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  5. So true Jo. You said it best when you said that we're both in a state of survival. Luckily after watching you I know I CAN survive, and hopefully do it as well as you. I love that quote, thank you for sharing it.

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