Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Motherhood, Monotony and Joy!

I have been tossing different ideas around to blog about for the past couple of weeks but haven't made the plunge into anything....until now.

Part of me doesn't even know if I should keep this blog. I got rid of Facebook and Instagram, so I feel like this is my only "connection" to those who want to see pictures of my kids and see what our little family is up to. 

That makes up for the majority of the reason why I haven't blogged in forever. I push it off because I'm unsure if it's worth keeping up. However, I finally decided that I might as well post a little something in the meantime. 

I actually do have something that I want to post about....more than just pictures and brief synapses of what we have been up to. So if you read nothing else in this blog make sure you read the awesome quotes below.

I've been thinking a lot about routines, motherhood & monotony. Sometimes I become so unaware and ungrateful during those times when things are the most monotonous and prosaic. When a long stride of monotony hits & nothing new and exciting is happening I don't recognize the huge blessings that stare me in the face every single day. 

Sometimes instead of seeing the miracle of every day conveniences and blessings (like running water, cell phones, grocery stores, serving my kids, doing laundry, running, giving my kids baths....) I tend to look at what isn't exciting and what seems to be lacking. I get lost and become so unaware and ungrateful. 

I was just recently complaining about and feeling so run down by all the things that I 'have' to do for my kids. Sheesh- I have to bathe them, do laundry, serve 1,000 meals a day, clean up their messes, wipe dirty bums, deal with attitude problems, yada yada yada.... I was piling up this huge list of things I am 'so sick of doing'. And then thanks to Divine guidance and inspiration I felt like Heavenly Father was telling me, "You complain about these so-called tasks but Jena, they are only meant to bring you joy. These 'tasks' are what bring you close to your children, what help them know they are loved, helps you become a closer family, helps you become more selfless and caring. These 'tasks' are designed to bring you joy and happiness!" 

I felt like I was hit with a ton of bricks. Uhh...hello...how in 4 1/2 years of parenting had I not seen this more clearly? How have I been living so many of my days feeling 'blah' and frustrated by these 'tasks' instead of being filled with gratitude that I get to clean my babies, feed them healthy food, make sure they are growing healthy and strong. What a MIRACLE it is that I can go to the kitchen sink, pull up a lever and receive endless cold, FRESH water! I can fill a bath with hot water to keep my kids nice and warm while I bathe and scrub them clean. I get to wipe away tears, put bandaids on sore knees, kiss owies, sweep up the endless amounts of grass that trail through my house (so that we can live in a clean, happy home), do laundry so that my kids have clean clothes, etc....These are NOT chores...these are not tasks to be checked off a 'to-do' list. Each and every one of these moments is designed to bring us closer to God and closer to each other.

After this aha moment, I read this quote from a magazine that I LOVE (and highly recommend getting)- it's called 'Seeing the Everyday'.

"Our lives are the sum of each moment and interaction. Each day we work, eat, laugh, teach, play, read, remember- and work at it all again the next day. Within seemingly small exchanges  we find opportunity to build relationships, develop character, find joy for the price of our time. Life's most essential possibilities are realized at home. Where we share, teach, grow, learn, serve, give our best without praise or fanfare. Because every effort, every moment matters in the development of a person. Nothing is really routine."

Now if that doesn't hit the nail on the head then I don't know what does. It sums up exactly what I was just learning and realizing. This quote expresses what I was learning a million times better than I ever can. 

I also came across these quotes from the same magazine, and they are all just as applicable:

"It may in fact be one of the great secrets of life that working beside and for one another is intrinsic to real enjoyment and meaning. In doing this work together we will discover that we have created patterns of oneness....We will find that not only do families and communities thrive in working beside and for one another, but also that the oneness that results will invite the finest in individual exertion and development." 

And another....

"Our happiness lives in our common, daily routines and exchanges. This inherent power is released as we genuinely watch, listen to, and participate with those around us. Dwelling in the prosaic, we discover what we already have." 

So there...that's it. That's my post. If I am the only mother who has ever felt this way about life then please don't judge me here. Give me credit for trying my darnedest to be better than I am naturally. But my hope in sharing all of this is that it will strike a cord in another mother's heart and be the 'aha' moment that you need! 










"HAPPINESS.
 Realizing- in the most common ways- what we already have."


7 comments:

jamie t. said...

Oh Jena, I think that you speak for so many mothers including me. I had to laugh because I was interrupted about 3 times just trying to read this because Carter had milk spilled and on his hands, and Lila needing more toast etc. Sometimes I just want to get through one task without having to stop and take care of something. You are so right though that these moments are gifts, and it is the way that we look at things and the attitude we have that is either going to make our "job" a joy or a monotonous mess. I hope you keep up the blog because I love hearing your insights. You are great!

Dax and Jen said...

You always keep me inspired. Don't stop the blog, it is the only way I get to see your family and how your kids are growing! I use mine as my journal because I just don't journal well otherwise. :)

Emily said...

Jena!
I love to read your blog (and Jessie's too). It's so fun to hear about your life even though we live so far away. Your kids are getting so big. I love the pictures and I LOVE your stories and insight. You inspire me to be a better person and Mom each time I read what you write. I sure wish we could be together more, but for now, I enjoy reading your blog to keep up with your sweet fam! Love ya!!

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