Thursday, February 7, 2013

A question I'm glad I asked...

Proud Mommy Moment, before singing to Jillian at bedtime:

Me - "What do you like best about yourself?"
J - "That I'm my own self."

At this point, I was mentally jumping for joy, and just floored.  Not surprised, but I guess taken aback by how deep her answer was.  Yes, I asked her to reflect on herself, but she could have easily gone the direction of answering with something having to do with her physical appearance.  However, I had actually anticipated her to answer with something having to do with the fact that she's good at reading.  Even that answer would have led me to agree, but with a gentle followup to address the fact that her self-worth is something separate from what she's good at and/or how much she achieves.  Sure, talents and achievements can build one's self-esteem, but I don't want her to NOT like herself if reading somehow became something she wasn't good at.

Moving on...

Me - "Wow.  I like that answer.  I think that's great!  When you say your 'own self,' what do you mean by that?"
J - "Well, that I can be my own self and I don't have to be how everyone describes, I like that my favorite color is blue, and a lot of girls like the color pink." (she later pointed out that actually, it seems a lot of girls also like blue and turquoise, lol).

She didn't specify anything else, but I'm fairly certain that there are probably a lot of other ways in which Jillian - at least at some subconscious level - feels like she goes against the grain...and unapologetically so, which makes me happy.  My hope is that these small, but powerful self-reflections are verbal manifestations of a spirit and soul that will always celebrate her own, unique qualities; and to trust her own self and her own judgement in matters of the heart and of character, even when - and especially when - she is hesitant to follow the crowd.

She's only 7 years old, but I feel like Jillian has unknowingly met a milestone that many of us work toward for much longer.  It's one that needs nurturing and reinforcement after being met, as there are many forces that can negate such a fragile way of being...but I'm joyful for the fact that my daughter has not only verbalized a way of being, but has also recognized it as something good and something in which she takes great pride.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Too Much

Our house looks even more turned upside down than the norm, BUT...I got a decent amount accomplished today:  almost done with E's bday invitations and mailing some out tomorrow; finished up Jody's Silly Jillybeans order to be mailed out tomorrow; prepped a few more Hearts for the kids' doors (see previous pics); cleaned the kids' bathroom countertop and mopped the floor; took the kids to feed the ducks tonight (pics to be posted later!); and started some laundry!  However, please note that when I say our house is turned upside down, this is probably an understatement.

Who knows how many loads of laundry need to be folded and put away...and how many square feet are covered in miscellaneous crafting supplies...I feel like I have my hands in so many things (like most Mommies), that I can never even begin to get the house in a state where I can feel okay crafting cute Vday decor...because, what would be the point?  I could hang the decor, but nobody would notice because my ADD has manifested itself in the form of stuff everywhere.

All of this to say that I don't know whether to feel proud of myself for doing these things for the kids (handmade invitations; daily vday door decor expressing the things we love about them; quick trip to feed the ducks, etc.) OR overwhelmed (Richard is sick of hearing me use that word...) by all that is left to do...

Some say that their house is a reflection of themselves.  And I'll admit it...ours is a reflection of me.  The words, "too much" probably sum it up best:  too much I need to do, want to do, have to do; too much stuff; too much time spent on this project or that project...too much brainstorming...too much guilt resulting from expectations of myself that can only be described as "too much."

The ironic thing is that in having so much "too much," the resulting feeling is "not enough."