Friday, March 21, 2014

Get Over Yourself!

My baby and me!

My daughter was begging me to let her take this picture with a real camera (I guess her toy one isn't cutting it anymore!). We tried to get one with the baby looking and giggling, but we couldn't coordinate the timing!

This year, I'm doing very well in some areas of my Lenten observation (I have successfully given up Facebook!) and not so much in other areas (I should really be getting off the computer right now and saying the Rosary rather than writing!).

I did watch a segment by Fr. Robert Barron a few weeks ago on Vice and Virtues. I have yet to watch the rest of the series (again, a Lenten failure!), but I have spent a lot of time contemplating the little that I did see! In particular, the virtue of humility.  Fr. Barron stressed that it is necessary to let go of the ego and realize that everything we have and are is a gift from God.

This includes not putting too much thought and attention on yourself. For example, getting lost in your own thoughts too much or worrying too much about what other people think of you.

I suppose I am writing about this at all because of hormones! Before I had Teresa, I posted that there is one thing that I especially love about pregnancy (besides the baby's movement). That is, my hormone levels are very steady, and I feel very emotionally stable. That's not to say that I don't still feel all the emotions, but they are more tempered (for example, I will not cry over a sappy commercial like I may when I have PMS!).

Anyway, with the return of fertility comes all the rise and fall of hormones. I know this is good, natural, beautiful, feminine...but it is also hard and a tad annoying :). I find myself being more sensitive and dwelling on things that I know should not phase me. For example, I will wonder why I wasn't invited to an outing that the other moms are talking about (um...duh...I can think of a hundred reasons!). Or, if a certain friend hasn't e-mailed me back then I wonder if they are mad at me (um...we are all super duper busy especially with the start of spring sports!). Or, I will spend ample time worrying or contemplating things that are out of my control.

Ah...hormones! I guess they mess with my emotions which cause me to turn inward. And, I don't want to turn inward. I want to live a humble life with the focus off of myself! I wrote a while back that I was refusing to be in pictures when I was very pregnant and feeling extremely frumpy. Well, I am not pregnant anymore and I want to capture moments with my precious baby...whether I feel photo worthy or not :). Thus the picture above...

Here's my pretty smile!

I recently realized my least favorite thing that strangers say to me when I am out with my kids. It's not: "Are you done yet?" But rather, when my baby is crying (she is usually a happy baby when she is held!) and a stranger says, "Somebody's not happy!" kidding!

Last week we were at the mall and a stranger actually went up to the baby carrier, pulled back the hood and said, "Cheer up only gets worse because you have to pay taxes when you get older!" Um...get away from my baby please!

Of course, most people mean absolutely no harm, and I'm sure that I said that very thing to many people back in the days when I worked in retail and a crying baby would come through my checkout lane! It's just conversation!

So, why would it bother me? Upon reflection, I think it bothers me so much because I feel like they are pointing out a place where I am failing as a mother at that moment. While rationally, I know this is absurd (sometimes a mom just needs two hands and can't hold her harm done!), I've written before that I like to portray (even if it's the opposite of my feelings) that I've got it all together! And, if a baby is screaming, then clearly I don't have it all together!

How silly for me to make this about me. That is an area in my life where I can use a huge dose of humility! These people are not judging me! I can think of other instances too...but that's all I'm going to share because you're probably sick of reading :)!

There were a few humorous moments recently where I did not feel bad about myself...and it was good to take myself so lightly! First of all, my son Joseph was giving me a huge hug when he called me "his big fat mommy!" HA!!! For those of you that don't know me, I am not as small and fit as I used to be, but I'm not big and fat either. Gotta just laugh and hug back!! The second came this morning during a lovely playdate with friends. A good friend went into my silverware drawer to find a spoon for her coffee...and all she could find was a baby spoon (which she asked me if she could use!). HA!!! Gotta just laugh...and empty my dishwasher!

So, in addition to giving up Facebook (going well!) and praying the Rosary more frequently (currently not going well), I'm also praying for the grace to be humble (hormones and all!).

What are you working on this Lent?

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