No Fear

I'm alone with the kids a lot.

This is, in many ways, one of the greatest advantages of homeschooling my children. I get to be there for both the pivotal and the mundane moments of their everyday lives; influencing, directing and enjoying them, unencumbered by someone else's schedule or requirements.

However, as any mother knows, the constant company of children can drive one a bit batty.

As Little Miss C has gotten older, I've started leaving her in charge of her younger siblings while I go running in the morning or dash to the store for milk. She has the capacity to be a tender and nurturing babysitter, {She once comforted her brother while he threw up in the middle of the night and then stoically washed out the bowl.} but tending one's siblings is not without its challenges. Sometimes, she gets drunk on her power and bosses her brothers around; or E takes advantage of the lack of adult supervision and tortures everyone around him with his defiance and temper; or Baby R has a blow-out diaper and no one wants to deal with it.

And then there's the issue of her blood phobia. Not just a fear-- she has a full on, run-into-traffic-in-a-blind-panic phobia that makes me second guess the wisdom of ever leaving her to deal with potential skinned knees or cracks to the forehead, let alone worst-case-scenarios.

I contemplated this as I went running yesterday. If something terrible were to happen while I was away, I'd be haunted for the rest of my life. But if I didn't get a break every once in a while, my sanity would seriously suffer. My desire for added freedom wrestled with my desire to make a perfect decision. So I ran and prayed and pondered as I listened to conference, and with sudden clarity I felt the answer dawn on me.

When people hear that I gave birth to my children at home, they ask how I could be brave enough {read: stupid enough} to be so far from the resources of a hospital in the case of catastrophic circumstances. What if something happened to the baby? How could I live with myself? I always tell them that while J and I both desired to give birth at home, we didn't make the decision on desire alone. We made the choice with prayer, which allowed me to let go of end result. Regardless of whether disaster struck or not, I knew in my heart that I would be able to rely on that feeling of confirmation I had in prayer, and thus have peace about the matter.

I felt that the same approach should be applied to these present circumstances. Every time I am faced with the decision of whether to allow Miss C to watch the kids or whether to hire a babysitter, I plan to pray about the matter. If I feel good about leaving, I'll be able to do so without regret. If not, I'll simply wait or get a babysitter. This simple solution allows me to feel that I'm living in faith instead of fear.

Experiences like these remind me of Heavenly Father's love for both me and my children. He really is the perfect parent. :)


Singin' Heart said...

What a great post! This is such a great reminder.
Oh, the life of being a mother...we really can't do it alone.

merelyLooking said...

Ohmigosh Sweetie, 33 years of motherhood and that never occurred to me. I never had enough faith - in Heavenly Father or myself. You once said you looked at me and looked forward to aging; I look at you and look forward to spiritually growing.

Three Lads and a Lis said...

I love this post! It's so true, I don't think Heavenly Father intended us to do motherhood all by ourselves, ever.

I had the same comments about our homebirth with our third. People would say "I would love to do that but I'd never have the guts or nerve to." My new response, that I have thought about time and time again is this "If I had to have the nerve to do it, I wouldn't have done it." If through prayer and logic, my husband or I ever felt uneasy about it, we would have just as soon packed up and checked into the hospital. The plan was not without serious and spiritually contemplation.

I think my new response could apply in so many arenas of life. Thank you for sharing and enjoy your brief snippets of "me" time!

torrie said...

wow. this is a great post. and one i needed to hear. i believe you are mormon? and i am christian, but goes to show you it doesn't matter. we believe in the same God, the same Jesus that saves us and this was something i needed to hear. remembering that my Heavenly Father loves me and is the perfect parent is a perfect analogy to help us live in prayer and faith rather than in fear.

Nicole said...

And I look forward to a day when hopefully children will be older and more responsible so I can also enjoy these moments if necessary. It is very difficult to be away from family and with children constantly, but it is also a blessing :). I'm glad you are home! We have also been so very busy but have wondered how your summer was going. Keep in touch, we're trying to do some things before we move if you're in the area or have ideas, we'd love to join you! And this is better for an email, but we forgot to ask where Js parents live and tell you about our neck of the woods if you're still looking. Well, we'll talk soon!

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