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Sitting in the Shadow of Doubt

So, I sat down to write for the first time in months. I was almost finished a post I was really proud of and Facebook glitched and it was gone. Man, oh man, was it tempting to close my computer, walk away, and have a little cry. Unlucky for me Mat didn’t answer his phone so I had no one to cry to and my original post was about continuing on. Gah, so here I am continuing on.

It has been months since I have sat down to write. In the beginning it was mostly a time thing. I had made plans for my writing and started to work towards some really exciting goals and then I let a seed of doubt grow into something ugly and unwelcome. Instead of doing away with it I let it keep growing until I was sitting in its shadow. The thing with sitting in the shadow of your doubts is it doesn’t take much to convince yourself the shadow is actually shade and a lovely place to be. The truth is the shadow actually isn’t providing a respite, it is slowly withering you away.

Coming back from being withered isn’t an easy thing to do. It takes time and energy just to gain back the ground that has been lost before you can even start moving forward again. In the past few weeks I have been afraid to sit down and write. What if my words don’t work the way I want them to? What if I offend someone? What if it sounds like I am having a pity party or my writing no longer resonates? My what ifs quickly became my reasons why it wasn’t a priority.

Reflecting on my ache to write and my hesitation to do so got me reflecting on the mother I desire to be and the mother that I am. Are you ready for a plot twist? They are the same person. I am a mother who takes her kids to the park and spends mornings at the beach. Who packs lunches the night before and goes on adventures in the mountains. I am the Mom that sets goals and makes them a priority.

Does it matter that we make it to the park maybe once a week and have been to the beach once all season? No, I am still that Mom. Does it matter that we haven’t gone on an adventure to the mountains since before the babies? No, I am still the Mom that adventures with her kids. Does it matter that I stop to buy lunch because I don’t have the bandwidth to make it every day? No, I am still the Mom that packs lunches. Does it matter that my goals are taking me longer than I expected to get started on? No, I am still the Mom who sets goals and makes them a priority.

I am the Mom that has two one-year-olds who stays home because nap time is important. I am the Mom who picked up a sandwich at Tim Hortons on my way to drop Bridget off at day camp because I didn’t have the space in my life to make one myself. I am the Mom that tries to attend events even when I know they will likely end poorly.

Just because I can’t do all of the things I desire in my motherhood does not mean I am no longer that Mom. It means that right now I need to give myself some grace. I need to savour the Mom that I am right now because this Mom, the mom who cleaned up poop painting and hauled off a strong willed 4 year old, who held her child while they cried in disappointment and canceled her own plans she was really looking forward to, is still that Mom.

Here is a photo I took of the kids at the beach earlier this week. It was a highly engineered outing with a lot of strategic forethought….we wont be doing it again soon. It was a solid alright and that is good enough for me!

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