Five Minute Friday: Messenger

Lisa Jo Baker runs a blog with a focus on encouraging moms. All moms. Stay-at-home moms, working moms. Single moms. Married moms. Moms who can’t keep their houses clean and feel weighed down by their imperfections. Moms who are frustrated and weary and wonder if they are doing “it” right. She lifts us up, holds our hands, and tells us we are doing great.

Each week Lisa Jo hosts a linkup called Five Minute Friday. The goal is to write for (just) five minutes on a one-word prompt she provides. Unedited and raw. Learning not to judge our writing too much. Learning not to judge ourselves too much. Letting it just be.

And so I join Lisa Jo’s linkup, because this blog reflects who I am as a mother, if through a lens colored by debt.

Today’s prompt is: MESSENGER

I’ve debated not writing anything at all for today. The prompt is all well and good and I’m sure plenty if other writers are taking it to really great, deep, spiritual places today. I tried to gather my thoughts and remembered phrases like “don’t kill the messenger” (yeah, I tend to be a little on the negative side) and

How will they preach unless they are sent? Just as it is written, “H OW BEAUTIFUL ARE THE FEET OF THOSE WHO BRING GOOD NEWS OF GOOD THINGS!” (Romans 10:15 NASB)

It would be easy to talk about Jesus being a messenger, but I don’t really feel that. Right or wrong, I think of messengers as being impartial bystanders who just pass along some information, and I suppose that’s why this prompt has me befuddled.

I’m not impartial or a bystander as a Christian, as a mom, or as someone figuring out my finances. I’m passionate and I have things to say. I want you to know what I have learned. I’m hoping some people are able to grow from my mistakes, to celebrate my victories with me – no matter how small, and to offer their own wisdoms in return.

I suppose I see myself as a mom who teaches her children (the best she can), as a Christian who practices (because I need to practice and make myself better), as a person studying her finances and hoping to learn. Teaching, practicing, and studying… But not passively listening to a message and certainly not impartially delivering one.

DONE

So, I actually debated not even doing the linkup today. I’ve felt like I didn’t have anything to say and this post wasn’t “good enough” and you know what? It’s not something I would write and post on just any other day, if only because the topic didn’t really bring out a strong opinion or a learning experience. It’s just is, and so no, I wouldn’t normally publish this. But remembering what Five a Minute a Friday is all about – I decided to submit a post anyway. If only so other people can see that someone else struggles to come up with words. If only so someone else can see where the mind wanders, even when you feel like there’s nothing to write about. So there you have it. May next week be better ­čÖé Happy Friday!

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Five Minute Friday: Hands

Every week, the uplifting Lisa Jo hosts a linkup called Five Minute Friday. She provides a one word writing prompt and we write for just five minutes. No editing. No fussing. Just writing to write and to express and not holding back. Five minutes goes fast, y’all. Today’s prompt is hands.

My husband and I have a long commute – 30 minutes there and 30 minutes back. It’s a bit longer if you count the time to swing to the daycare and do the pick-up and drop-off. And being the guilty working mom that I am, I ride in the back with my girls.

The baby is still not great at taking a pacifier, so the best thing available to soothe her is my hand. She’ll suck on the fleshy part of my palm or sometimes on my pinky knuckle. And somehow that is comforting to her.

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My oldest, on the other side of me, will be holding my hand for dear life. She’s not scared or anxious. But she sure does love to hold my hand. Tightly.

When I was home on maternity leave, she would nap in “momma’s bed” because it was the easiest way to make sure she napped and momma got her much-needed break. Of course, I had to lay there, too. And she had to hold me. Usually it was a choke hold around my neck, but some lucky days, she just wanted to hold my hand while she slept. And you know what? I wanted to hold her hand, too.

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Hand holding is connection. We get that from an early age. We reach out for our mommy and daddy’s hands and we know that we are protected and safe and loved. So much is communicated through the touch of a mother’s hand.

And so I squeeze myself in the backseat every morning, mentally making note that I’d fit much better if my hips weren’t so padded, and I hold hands with both girls. One chews on me and both pull on me – all the way to my heart.

DONE

Five Minute Friday: Close

I am a huge fan of Lisa Jo Baker, who blogs to encourage moms over at Lisajobaker.com. That’s it. Just to tell you about real motherhood – those days when you don’t like your kids, and the mess in the house is too much, and how real moms yell sometimes. And she gives moms a virtual hug and tells us it’s ok to be imperfect, but the point is to pick yourself up and continue to try and continue to give. Motherhood is an important mission field, and all mothers get to be a part of it.

Each week she hosts “Five Minute Friday” and the rules are simple: she provides a writing prompt and you write for five┬áminutes flat, without editing your work. The only rule is to visit the mom in the link-up before you and offer encouragement. Today’s prompt is close. Here I go:

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Every day at nap time, I sandwich myself in between a preschooler and a newborn – it’s the only way to get my preschooler to nap while I’m home on maternity leave. My leave has been incredibly “fun” for her – she always gets her mommy.

If we watch TV (and we are doing waaaaay more of that than I’d like), she wedges her feet under my nursing pillow and grabs hold of my nearest arm and just holds on for dear life.

While we she naps, she sleeps with her arm in a chokehold around my neck.

She just wants to be close to mom.

And I love it and hate it all at the same time. I love that she wants to be near me. I hate that she feels so frantic about it. I hate that she’s going to lose the opportunity in just one week. And sometimes I just want her to give me some room so that she’s not kicking or jiggling a nursing baby.

I don’t know what we will do when maternity leave is over. I can’t afford to stay home and yet I see how much this little one craves me. It makes me feel so guilty (and exhausted) that I didn’t plan better for her. Why didn’t I know I would love being a mommy? Why did I want a career so badly?

I’m sure when maternity leave is done, she’ll be sitting in my lap while I nurse every night and I don’t know how that is going to work?! The transition may be hardest on her…

Done!