Life is good. I'm really happy and content. I feel like things are finally coming together for me, and it's taken a while. I've always had things to be thankful for, but circumstances always left me waiting for the other shoe to drop, so to speak.
For a long time, no matter what I'm doing (even if I've looked forward to it) I've wanted it to hurry up and be over so I can move on to the next thing, and I haven't really enjoyed much for a long time. But that's changed, I'm living more in the moment. And I'm not entirely sure how or why or even when. But I'm so thankful it has.
For a long while I felt like all I did was work and didn't take any time for myself since when I wasn't working I felt like I should spend every waking non-working moment with my boys since I wasn't with them all day (working Mom guilt). Since I didn't do anything for myself, that means I didn't really keep up with my friends and if you don't keep up with them, you don't keep them. Then I would resent Tim when he went out and did things with his friends. We didn't go out on dates much since that would require me being away from the boys (in my defense, nursing does make that one harder). It was very cirular and a downward spiral of guilt.
Part of the "new and improved" Janelle came about because I have reconnected with one of my best friends from high school, and it's great to have a good friend back on my side. In fact, I, alone, am meeting her, alone, for dinner on Friday night. I'm very excited about it. One of my other great friends has moved to DC and comes home much more often since it's closer than she was before. And last, but certainly not least, a friend that I felt like was ditching me, wasn't. It turns out she had e-mailed several times to get together, but my work e-mail had her address blocked, and we got that figured out and both feel much better. In addition, I started this blog as something fun for just me to do, and that's helping too.
Also, Tim and I have joined a small group at church that meets twice a month. We are meeting some other great couples and fostering our sense of belonging, which is nice since we've only been there two years and are still finding our place and meeting people. I joined the Finance Committee at church, and even though it takes me away from the boys for a small chunk of time, I realize how good it feels to use my gifts that God gave me for the church. When I feel good, I'm a better mom and wife and that's really what I want.
Tim and I went to a party without the kids a couple of weeks ago, and had a fabulous time. We have decided, kids or no kids, nursing or not, we really need to do things with just us. We don't have to spend money to do it, but we need to have quality time where we can have fun and not be bogged down with being parents, employees, church members, business owners, or landlords and just be Tim and Janelle. Tim got out Monopoly Sunday night and the two of us played, he, of course, smoked me. But I kept him laughing with all of my "landlord" comments. But really, he put a hotel on Baltic Avenue--who puts that kind of money into a dump like that?!?
Oddly enough, one of the big things for my change has been finding FlyLady. I really feel good about the work that I'm doing in our home and that I'm getting things under control. When I have a clean house I feel good about having people over, I'm not stressed because I know what's for dinner and where my laundry is, and those are my two big stressors. Plus I'm learning I have just as much time as everyone else, so I might as well use it the way I would like!
We have also made some rules for the boys and posted them (no hitting, share toys and the like). At the bottom of the list, I have two reminders. They are really for me and I read them several times a day: Have Fun! Make Good Memories!
Sometimes I get lost in being a working Mom and I forget that I am shaping three precious lives and personalities. One of my primary jobs is to raise these boys into Godly men, and I have new fire to do a job that I won't be ashamed of. I am taking each day as it comes, not worring about tomorrow, planning for it, but not worring about it. I'm letting go of more of the "working Mom" guilt, knowing that God will provide a way for me to stay home someday and we're on the path; I just need to patient. And as I do that, I am enjoying each day more. Taking time to have fun with the boys each day, and knowing if I don't put them to bed every night of their lives, it will be fine-plus the game of Candy Land last night will make up for not being there to put them to bed tonight (church meeting). The mother is the heart of the home, and I am striving to be a warm, loving, welcoming heart. In the end, it's all about my attitude.
I don't know if this all came out right, but I'm in a good place right now. It's been so long since I've been here that I'm really excited about it and I'm enjoying it and doing what I can to make sure it stays this way.
God has been good to me, I am blessed!