I finish my coffee, kicking myself for having caffeine when I know how it makes me feel. I take 3 deep breaths, nope, still have that lump in my throat...I try it again, breath in, breath out, breath in, breath out....breath in, breath out. It's still there, the heavy feeling on my chest, my body taking note of each heart beat.
I'm actually quite proud of myself in some ways, usually the last few weeks of August are spent in denial and tears about my kids going back to school, this time the waves hit me one day before they go back, I guess that is progress, even if that feeling still rises.
I question everything. Why can't I just be the mom celebrating as they walk through the school doors, why can't I stop feeling anxious so I could home school. Did I feel better this summer because they were home? Is counselling actually helping or is it the lack of schedule that I so crave?
Why do I want them home? They fight most of the day, pester one another to tears, are bored beyond anything they can imagine themselves out of, and yet here I am tears streaming down my face and a heavy heart at not having them near me. Sometimes I wonder if my tears are for them or selfishly for myself, craving to be more for them as they learn how to leave us. Maybe the panic is that I want more time to fix my mistakes I've made in parenting, or it could be wishing life didn't phase me the way it does. It's apology's and could be's all wrapped up in a "what if" bow.
I breath in, I breath out, taking note that even just writing about it has helped. I look around my messy house, peaches on the dining room table that need to be dealt with, the final clean out of my van that has been filled with beach bags, and sunscreen bottles I couldn't find the last few months. Summer was good, but It also felt rushed and filled with work. I take note of what I learned from that as I try to improve on it for next year. Did I give them all I could? Did I spend it on my phone while denying them the attention they craved? I guess that is motherhood, wondering what you do right and relishing in what you do wrong.
I focus my attention on what I can change. I can put down my phone, I can tell them how much I love them, I can ask for forgiveness, I can push through the heaviness of motherhood and all it's questions (most of of the time.) I actually get to control myself, which is kind of new news to me. I GET TO CHOOSE MY REACTIONS TO MY LIFE. I have gone through much of life feeling sorry for myself, and I'm really so tired of being in that spot. So today I choose the things I can control, like how I react to a world that often hurts.
I breath in as large as I know how, knowing that choosing my reaction doesn't mean it's going to be easy. I know what is coming this Fall, and it's going to be the lonely. I know it's time for me to walk in the wilderness (thank you for that Brene Brown) I am working through my pain, allowing myself to truly feel it, and maybe having the security of my kids around me is part of my fear in letting them go, I know what's coming and it's been so long since I've truly been on my own. The only thing I seem to remember from bible school is "The pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of changing." I have finally hit that stage, and I'd be lying if I said I was looking forward to the pain part, I only know I can't stay in mediocrity.