Isn’t it weird what you remember when you look back on past moments from your life? You might think that I would remember all the work I accomplished while I was in Afghanistan and all those projects I had at one time memorized. Now I can’t even remember most of them. I only remember bits and pieces.
Like the Pol-e-nago Bridge or something like that. I remember it because to get there we had to travel a long way from the base to avoid a pretty dangerous area. I think if we drove straight south from the base it would have been an hour or so. But with the alternate route, we went around and then came up from the south. It took about a day and a half. But that isn’t the reason I remember the name. The real reason I remember the name of the bridge is because our local national engineer told me pol means bridge so when you say pol-e-nago bridge you are saying bridge twice and it sounds silly.
But I don’t remember a lot from my deployment today and it was only six years ago. I remember the fun I had at a base with my friend. The silly things we did on our downtime. The funny stories we shared and the memories I am still making with the people I remained friends with. So when I think about what I will remember from my early days as being a mom I wonder what will stick. I’m sure it won’t be how clean my house was or a lot of other silly things that take up my time.
What will I remember?
It used to surprise me when people would talk about the early days of motherhood. They all say they wish they had enjoyed the moments more.
No one I have talked to has said, I wish I had a cleaner house or my laundry always folded and put away. People always say I wish we had played more, I wish we had spent more time together.
Recently a mom I deeply respect said through tears that she wishes she had spent more time playing with her now grown-up daughter. It kind of makes me think.
Do I spend more time playing than doing chores?
Do I stop when my 3-year-old wants to have fun?
I know the pressure of feeling like there is so much to do. But I always notice there is more that needs to be done. More laundry to fold. And there is also a life to be lived with a little one who won’t be little forever.
Stop and enjoy the moment
These moments are passing by so quickly and I hope I’m using my time wisely. This motherhood road has me giving more of myself than I ever thought was possible. It is also giving me tears of laughter, happy giggles from tickle fights, wide-eyed wonder, and imagination.
Being a mom is so hard because you have to give so much of yourself. But when I stop to think about all I’m giving, I can quickly see all the good things I am getting. It is hard but rewarding. It is long days with fun moments.
Each day as my motherhood journey extends I realize how true the statement a random stranger in the airport told me. “The days are long, but the years are short.” Such truth and wisdom in those words.
I wonder what I will say years down the road. I hope I can remember to stop when it feels like I can’t and just enjoy the moment.