Sunday, February 13, 2011

"Sarahbeth" vs. The Mother Entity

Putting Simone to bed tonight, I had a philosophical breakthrough.  Probably not ready for print, as it's still milling in my mind.  But if you've read more than one post here, you'll already know that's never stopped me before.  :)

Throughout my motherhood, I've been surprised by how much the children seem to run on autopilot with development -- even when I botch moments, hours, entire days, or longer stretches. 

We all take turns being crabby or overtired or whatever, but in general...goodness seems to keep winning out.  The kids seem generally happy, feel loved and confident, and keep forgiving me for the botch-ups.

I was rocking Simone tonight and whispered to her: "Your mom loves you so much."  I don't normally talk about myself in 3rd person.  :)  But I do a lot with the kids when I talk about loving them. 

Tonight, I realized why.

I think there's a divide in motherhood between being the Individual (Sarahbeth) and being The Mother Entity.  The one who brought them into being and nurtures them. 

That's the part of me I want them to know loves them.  Because in a lot of ways, I feel like that's the part of me that never messes up.  No matter how rough a day is going...no matter how "off" our parent-child dynamics might be...I never hesitate in 100% love for them. 

My intentions are always pure, even if the delivery is awkward.

My "Sarahbeth" side is the one that forgets it's Pajama Day at co-op, snaps at the kids to buckle in because we're late, doesn't keep a June Cleaver level of housekeeping, figures out what's for dinner AS they're already starving, etc etc (etc etc).  The list could get long, so I'll cut it off here.

But the Mothering Entity side adores my kids beyond imagination.  Would sacrifice my life for them without blinking.  Would clear out every penny of savings for medical interventions for them.   Dreams bigger dreams for their life-joy than I ever dared have for myself.

This list could get long too.

In the end, I wonder if it really is only the Mothering Entity that shapes them along their path. Yes, my "Sarahbeth" elements are super-flawed, but their "Mother" cherishes and cares about them without any hesitation or interruption.

I've said often that I'd love to see what the world looked like if everyone felt adored by their parents.  And at times, I wonder if my flawed-self disrupts that in my kids.  That the irritable or stressed days are going to make them feel less loved...secure...or chip away at their core.

Maybe not? 

Right now, I'll cling to any theory (no matter how delusional) that my best of intentions in parenting will do more for my children than my flighty, forgetful, disorganized self might do. 

Happy Valentine's Day

Since Valentine's Day is upon us, I had a notion that I'd have some deep thought about love stuff.  But now, I'm not really sure what I'd say about it. 

Other than HOLY COW do we look like little kids here:

I'm sure our wedding guests thought we looked ridiculous.  Like a couple of grade school kids, dressed up in wedding costumes.

The good news:  I'm more thrilled to be married to him now, a decade later, than I could have fathomed on that day.  Love is much different and much better than that little girl in the picture knew it might be.

Happy Valentine's Day to the man who cleaned the entire house yesterday, bought me my favorite Lindor's chocolate, and took me out for sushi.  I think I'll keep you.