As this new year begins, I'm sure many of us are already busy spending it by my making plans. I am! Only to a certain point though....ever since I became a mom and stopped working outside of the home, I naturally eased into a mode that allowed me to make more decisions with my gut~ how I am feeling, which is usually right in tune with how my family is doing. I truly appreciate this new mode of living- really living.
Growing up I had always pictured myself working AND being a mom (which I still one day may decide to do), but when my first son arrived.....my decision to stay with him, learn with him, take in every little part of him, and give into every possible cue from nature on how to be the best mother became crystal clear. I wanted the event of motherhood to become me. I wanted our son to feel safe and secure and for my husband and I to continue feeling confident and assured in our parenting decisions. I wanted to completely soak in this start of something new and draw as much as I could from it. And as I sit here now, pregnant with our third child, I can proudly say that I've done all of that x2.
As wonderful as our life is ~ a large portion of it has been unplanned. And that's when me, (the planner extraordinaire) learned that maybe I don't like plans as much as I thought I did....
It was my mother who pointed out that half the fun in planning something is the anticipation of it. I had heard her say that before, but only recently really understood it. Really, HALF of the fun? But for me that's totally true. I'm an optimist and love looking ahead. It's not that I'm not happy with the present, I just really like looking forward to fun things to come because I believe there's so much in life just waiting for the taking.
Now back to motherhood.
While pregnant with our first I had heard all about the sleep training books....the books on how to program your new perfect little infant into fitting into this pre-planned schedule. I kinda thought it sounded good, but never really could wrap my head around the concept. I mean, why does it take pages and pages for someone to explain what human nature just does naturally? So, we didn't read any. Trust me, we heard LOTS of advice after our son arrived on how to manage his sleep patterns but honestly- they were all useless. By 4 months he was sleeping on his own throughout the night and during the day I just put him down whenever he was tired. All of our non pre-planning worked perfectly! Then once the toddler years hit, I heard more and more about how children should sleep at set times for their naps. This was a hard one for us to adapt to because as much as I like having "plans" I didn't like how something as simple as nap would cut into our day. But that's the reality of toddlerhood. Somehow everything gets reversed and the littlest of little things turn into the biggest of BIG things.
Now I do still think plans are important when involving an important event (showers, weddings, parties) but am much more of a go-with-the-flow kinda gal now when it comes to livin' life. As is my husband. We're also pretty private when it comes to talking about our future....we just shrug and smile whenever we get asked about things like when we're going to ever buy a house, how many kids we're going have....blah, blah, blah. Life plans to us are totally overrated. It's like what Nicholas Cage says in that movie Family Man:
"The plan isn't going to make us great. It's what we have together. That's what makes us great!"
As we begin this new year, we've got some fun plans on the calendar as well as some plans taken off of the calendar. First was discontinuing our oldest in preschool (nothing bad happened, just was no longer feeling right for us at this time), and adding in some fun classes for Benjamin and Grant to do together. We're also starting our new car shopping (we checked and 3 kids just won't fit in the Scion ;)) and are looking into getting a house cleaner (just a couple hours every other week...not as expensive as one would think!) and of course, baby #3 arriving this summer.
"We must be willing to let go of the life we have planned so as to have the life we have waiting for us." - joseph campbell
May you all enjoy a FUN New Year filled with as many or as little plans as you'd like there to be!