My ducks have been having a hard time lining themselves up properly as of late. I want to do all the things but I feel like I’m doing none of the things. But then I had an epiphany as I was helping Kayla through the struggle that is piano practice.
I hate helping Kayla practice piano. Hate it—more than I used to hate practicing my flute. She has inherited way too much of my clenched up frustration when things do not go completely perfectly. And watching her melt-down makes me want to melt-down. But, fortunately for me (and for her) I was having a surprisingly patient moment in which I did not give into my desires to run screaming from the room. And I managed to get her to calm down and actually play through her songs. It was a major accomplishment. The clouds parted. There were angels singing. It was that amazing.
And I realized, I am not giving myself enough credit. I really need to change my expectations and start stacking up a more realistic list of what “all the things are.”
It all boils down to a sense of what I consider an accomplishment and what I consider to be interruptions to the accomplishments. At a church meeting the other day, one of the other ladies reminded us that at the end of the day, when we feel like we haven’t finished anything on our ‘to do list,’ to remember to celebrate all the little interruptions and all we accomplished in taking care of them. Maybe "all" we did was help our children with their needs, and maybe at the end of the day that doesn’t look like much but when we sum up all the years and the little people we have raised into competent and loving human beings, it amounts to something grand.
The other thing that occurred to me is that I need to stop multi-tasking. I know . . . . I know . . . even as I write this my inner-self is shouting at me “but how will you ever get anything done?!” I don’t know, exactly, but I do know that I am currently functioning at about half capability, because I try to do “all the things” all at once. But in the end none of the things get done very well.
So my new goal is to be more present with my kids when I’m helping them. To (try to) embrace all the interruptions and give myself more mental gold stars along the way for all my accomplishments.
And if my duck line looks a little more zig-zaggy than all lined up then hey . . . that's motherhood right?