Yesterday was lovely. We went to the last swim team practice of the season then picked up Jimmy John sandwiches and headed over to my friend’s house. There were four of us moms total and 12 kids, ages almost 1 to almost 13. The day was cooler than it’s been lately and the house was a bustling with kid energy and good aromas from the kitchen.
We jumped right into chatting about summer trips and homeschool curriculum and as time passed, conversation wove itself through faith, cucumber growing, kid strengths and struggles, social media, and summer bedtimes, among other things.
Four hours ticked by as we chatted, the kids played, and we wandered through her garden and fruit trees (where I was convinced I’m ready to get land and become a homesteader despite by miserably failing cucumber plants).
One thing I love about deeper conversations and getting to know new people is that I find each person I meet has a trait I admire. It inspires me to pull a little something from them and apply it to my own life. It’s funny how I think I know myself so well and in conversation I’ll realize that perhaps I’m not as XYZ as I thought I was.
Yesterday’s example began while discussing the flow and general rhythm of our days. I tend to think of myself as a go with the flow person and a pretty chill mom. As I listened to others’ days and routines it highlighted to me just how much that isn’t true. And it made me laugh.
Have you heard that audio going around lately that says “I’d like to go with the flow… but could anyone tell me what time the flow is going to start. And how long it might last?” I feel seen.
The conversation impacted me enough that I brought it up on my evening walk with David. I asked him if he thought I was go with the flow. He immediately said he believed I was because I’m up for anything and find a good time whatever the situation (which I appreciated). When I clarified with “but what about chill? Am I chill?” he hesitated and thought through it a bit more. Again, I laughed.
In my mind I’m the mom that goes on an afternoon hike on a whim, pulling supplies for fairy houses out from alongside the trail on the way. In my mind I’m the mom that lets summer bedtimes stretch to forever because that’s the magic of the season. In my mind I’m the mom embraces the mess of the house because it means we’re making memories.
In reality, I’m the mom that has to plan the hike a few days ahead of time to make sure it fits into our schedule. In reality, I’m the mom that eventually calls the kids in and makes them go to bed because I know they’ll be cranky if there are too many late nights in a row. In reality I’m the mom that can’t really kick my feet up and relax in the evening until the kitchen is clean and the dishes are done.
I guess this post is brought to you by a moment of self reflection, of trying to understand my own strengths and struggles, of my desire to be a relaxed and easy going mom while also fitting in all the things we deem important.
I so admire my friend’s ability to embrace the natural rhythms of the day, as I’ve learned over time to embrace the natural rhythms of the year within our homeschool. And while I don’t think I can change the core of who I am at age 38, I love how conversations like these inspire me to take a bit of what I admire about a person and apply it to my own life, whether that is in concrete application or simply taking a deep breath and embracing a more relaxed and peaceful energy with which to approach our days.
How often do you reflect on who you are and who you want to be? Are the often in line? What is a trait you admire in a friend that you would like to apply to your own life?