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Monday, October 5, 2009

Easy Out

Recently, my life has felt anything but easy.

As my recent struggles have mounted, I've begun considering how absolutely easy it would be for me to take a job. You know, leave my mothering responsibilities, sit at a desk, answer calls, scribble down notes, take a lunch break, deal with annoying co-workers, and then return home just in time for dinner.

How easy it would be to turn over the responsibilities of my life: feeding two babies at a time, this one nursing, that one with a bottle perfectly perched to her mouth that keeps slipping and I keep adjusting while feeding another baby, the carefully planned attempt to get two babies to sleep at once while the older girls play loudly, sometimes successful, sometimes not, but always worthlessly short naps.

And what about when it is nearly dinner time and you realize that not once have you had time to play and really interact with your oldest and second child, and you have no real naps to show for it from your babies you've coaxed all day . And what if this goes on like this for days and days and you forget what it's like to even have a moment to think of laundry and solitude, and staying up late just because you're alone.

How easy it would be to run far away from this situation. How easy it would be to give it away to someone else to deal with from 9-5 and keep my cool, keep my grace, my rested body, my witty mind.

Driving home this evening, we sang together. The soft, tired voices of Johanna and Caroline sang words they knew and some made up, babies' cries had finally hushed for the first time in a while.

Sane or otherwise, I realize this whole "easy" thing must be overrated. Since when did women take the easy road? Since when did women turn their back on hard labor, being beaten down again and again and not stand again and again?

Here's to the legacy.


Jess and Matt said...

oh you are so right, Nicole. I don't know how you manage all that you do, having four wee little ones. I am sure it is nowhere near easy to keep your sanity, but you amaze me. I have been that working mom, not a 9-5, but still... It is easier in a sense, but oh how you actually MISS those little cries, nap-less afternoons, and sweet singing voices. I hope things can seem easier for you soon.

Bracken and Bracken said...

Nicole- You are an impressive writer and an amazing mother!! I love looking at your blog, I admire you for all that you do :)

zeeny said...

OK, I will admit that I look at your blog regularly without commenting! I'm related to Amylynne in a round about way...my husband and hers are cousins! That is how I found you. I love reading your posts. I just had my third baby and have felt some similar feelings. It is good to know I am not alone! I am inspired by what you are doing...it seems to me you aren't just surviving but thriving. I am inspired by all you attempt to do. Good luck!

Jill, Glen, Matthew, and Taylor said...

I really liked this post. Not that I am glad you struggle sometimes but we all do as mothers. It's so nice to hear those feelings are normal. I can't imagine four kids; two seems like a lot of work sometimes. I almost said it's good they come one at a time but not in your case. I admire you. Jill Lau

the boyd family said...

that was awesome... i'm linking this to my blog.

Ann said...


I didn't comment before because I was going to talk to you about your beautiful post today. :) I love you, and I don't want you to feel badly about not calling back. Don't stress or rush, just call when you can. I think my schedule is a little freer than yours. :) I love you, and I'm here!


The Ross Family said...

Take it from someone with a career and no kids, I would trade my job for full time motherhood in a heartbeat. This will probably make you laugh, but I often look at your blog and hope that my life will be like your someday! I'm sure it's not easy, but I admire you so much!!

susa said...
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susa said...
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Kaylan said...

I LOVE YOU NICOLE!!! You are my hero! I look up to you so much and you have just stated what I have been thinking of lately. How hard it can be to be a stay at home mom. More so for you than me but I still struggle not to put Haley in front of the tv to get something done or get time just to work on the computer for a few minutes.

jenjamin said...

We have twins (# 2 &3 of 5) also. Today they turned 10. I appreciate your thoughts. This is a quote I think of often when I feel overwhelmed... Author Anna Quindlen reminds us not to rush past the fleeting moments. She said: “The biggest mistake I made [as a parent] is the one that most of us make. … I did not live in the moment enough. This is particularly clear now that the moment is gone, captured only in photographs. There is one picture of [my three children] sitting in the grass on a quilt in the shadow of the swing set on a summer day, ages six, four, and one. And I wish I could remember what we ate, and what we talked about, and how they sounded, and how they looked when they slept that night. I wish I had not been in such a hurry to get on to the next thing: dinner, bath, book, bed. I wish I had treasured the doing a little more and the getting it done a little less” (Loud and Clear [2004], 10–11).

I cherish motherhood the mess, the noise and the fatigue, it is all wonderful.