Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Beauty in Motherhood....Always

We had so much fun on the photo shoot with the beautiful Robin and her four children.  Yes, that's Robin...the slim, young woman in the middle there and yes, all four of those cuties gathered close are her own three sons and one daughter.  Don't they look perfect?  Doesn't Robin look like a peaceful, beautiful girl whose four children listen to her every minute and obey her every word?  Look at those smiles!  That's a happy family.

Uh-oh.  Ok, we staged this a little.  Just a little, there was no actual fighting going on, but there was a fit on the ground and some screaming.  During our walk with Robin, everything was not rosy and perfect the whole way.  Her daughter got hot and wanted to be carried.  The middle son kept running ahead, the older one just wanted to stop and draw, the young one's shoes were a little too big and he kept falling down.  And none of the boys were all that excited about letting Aubrianah take their pictures.  But look at Robin.  She's still beautiful.

  That's the way it is with motherhood.  When my son was little, his fits were legendary.  He was strong-willed and self-motivated.  But he was also hysterically funny and super-smart (he still is, and he's also now compassionate and helpful.)  I remember feeling like the most incredible mother in the world when I taught him to read, and the worst mother in the world when I spanked him for hitting me in the head with a toy truck.
  I didn't feel so beautiful when I found out my daughter's ankle had been sprained for months and I didn't even know it, or when I kept my infant son out in the sun too long and his face blistered, or when I yelled at my daughter just yesterday, or when I have to take out the trash again because my now adult son apparently has not been taught responsibility well enough by...yep...his mother.

  Those kids have power over our beauty, don't they!?  Mine do.  They disobey or do something embarrassing, I'm an ugly mother.  They do something amazing or have a perfect day?  I'm beautiful again!  What's wrong with that thinking?

  I don't know if thinking about this is hard for you, it is hard for me.  I've spent over eighteen years being all about these two kids.  They are my job, they are who I am.  But I'm about to get fired....or, at least, I've been downsized.

  As I look back at the last eighteen years, though, and think about all the things I didn't do a good enough job on, or the times I lost my temper, the times they disobeyed me or screamed or hit or sassed me, the things I could have taught them and didn't....I realize that those times that I didn't (and don't) feel beautiful, were actually making me MORE beautiful.  And they are making my children more beautiful, too.  The experiences and trials and hard times are what strengthens us, and strength is beauty.  The dumb things we've done and the ability to look back on our mistakes give us knowledge, and knowledge is beauty.

  Let's get back to Robin.  She's in the midst of it, four very young and sometimes disobedient children, a husband, a job.  Robin is a great mix of patience, kindness, and discipline with her children.  She's such a beautiful mom already!  When she gets finished raising these four, she's going to be STUNNING!

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