What I Would Do Differently ~

I watch our daughters and love the fact that they didn't get many of my bad habits, some but not many. If I could go back, I would do some things a bit differently. Give me some slack here, I'm a grandmother now and have learned the hard way what is important and what is not. What a young wife, young mother's priorities should be, and what she should try to learn to let go. I don't have nearly the OCD's that I did a mere six years ago. I had begun lightening up before the accident, and the 77 days + a year and a half of recovery put life in perspective, let me tell you. For instance,

1) I wouldn't wake anyone up on Saturdays just to clean house. Breakfast would be whatever you chose to fix and eat. There would be more time watching cartoons and play time, especially if there's school five days a week.

2) I'd designate certain chores to be done, but not roll my eyes and threaten bodily harm if they didn't jump right to it. There is a line between what really needs to be done and what should be done by the time one goes to bed. Learn to know the difference.

3) I would SIT on the sofa with the rest of the family instead of washing/drying clothes, and cleaning up areas where you're all alone. Get in there with them! You can take thirty minutes when they're in bed to finish the kitchen or those clothes.

4) Money would not be the factor that I chose to be sure my children loved me. They'll love you whether they get that toy they had a tantrum over when you said no or cried out loud when you said no to the 'just riding around town with the guys/girls'. Your kids will love you, no matter what. They just will. I think it's in the scriptures or written in stone somewhere, so don't worry about it. Or them.

5) Make time for your man. Important. Read again. Make time for your man. He will be there when the babies/kids/teenagers finally move out, for good, and it's just the two of you. John and I didn't use family or friends for babysitting. Our daughters had to be in their rooms by 8-8:30 whether they were sleepy or not. They could read a book, listen to the stereo (we didn't have TV's in their rooms) or just go to sleep. It was quiet time for us to watch TV, talk, or even go to bed early, too. Children need to see you making time for each other. And then when they are on their own, you have a life that you've cultivated with the one you love.

6) Laugh. Oh for pete's sake, laugh at anything. People make great laughter moments. Learn to laugh at yourself and teach the difference between laughing at and laughing with. It always has seemed true to me that when I look for the bad/scary/yucky part of a day, it finds me. But if I walk out the door thinking, "What have you got for me today, Lord?!" the day isn't nearly as hard. Most times it's filled with laughter. I'm telling you, life is funny. Just watch sometimes. People do the strangest things. And animals?! Oh but I stray ~

7) Understand that just as you get used to the stage your child is in, it will change. And you won't know it until you're wondering where your sweet one went and who this devil child is. Kuddos to those of you with more than one to deal with. You'll be trying to figure out personality changes and bodily changes foreva!

8) Motherhood is one career, God-given, that I wouldn't trade for the world. But it's hard being a parent. It's hard being a parent and being in your thirties. Ugh, it was hard. But as with all things, even this shall pass away.  It's hard being a grandparent, but it's also the most beloved spot to be. As much as I know our daughters love us, our grandbabies just adore us. Enjoy these days, sweet young women. Don't strive for spotless homes, everything neatly organized and tucked away. Do what you can, develop a household plan that works for you but doesn't work you.

I'll leave you with these wise words. Print them up and place them in a frame. Hang it where you'll see it every day ~ like the laundry. She makes a lot of sense and it's how our Saviour wanted us to be from the beginning.

"We women have a lot to learn about simplifying our lives. We have to decide what is important and then move along at a pace that is comfortable for us. We have to develop the maturity to stop trying to prove something. We have to learn to be content with what we are.

As you create a home, don’t get distracted with a lot of things that have no meaning for you or your family. Don’t dwell on your failures, but think about your successes. Have joy in your home. Have joy in your children. Have joy in your husband. Be grateful for the journey." ~Marjorie P. Hinckley

Have a happy Friday and try hard not to base your self esteem on how many things you cross off your list.


Southern Queen of the Crazies said...

I already do all of that. :o) Thanks, Nan.

Brittany said...

Hmmm. Well, that makes me feel better. I'm pretty sure the reason my housework just doesn't get done is because I am lazy! haha, Great post!

Heather said...

Nan, I really needed this today! Hop over to my blog and you will see why! Love you!

Nancy said...

Kelly, Stacey and Jenny do this as well. I just wish I'd been more like that when they were growing up. Maybe that's why they now realize the important things in life :)

~ from The Letter Writer ~

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