Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Exercising Creativity and Flexibility in Motherhood

My husband and I attended the Kerygma Conference at the Araneta Coliseum last weekend (November 28-29, 2009) and one of the things that struck me with what Bro. Bo Sanchez shared is that his boys are more important to him than the Kerygma Conference. He shared how every 5 minutes or so his boys would ask him to play with them while he was trying to write his talks and prepare for the conference. He said he could have told them to play on their own and wait till their dad is finished writing his talks. But he chose to be interrupted in his preparations for the conference because although he’s in charge of a big catholic learning event which involves a lot of people, he still believes that his role as a father is much bigger than his role of ministering to thousands of Catholics attending the event.

It struck me because although I do not handle or organize conferences as big as the Kerygma Conference, I sometimes feel irritated when my son interrupts some of the things that I’m doing. It has been a challenge for me these past days not to speak to my son in an angry or irritated voice whenever he messes up the house or whenever he cries when I need to do something important like cooking, sweeping the floor or putting the clothes in the closet. You see, for the nth time, we’re again looking for a maid. We have not found a good and reliable one yet although we tried so many options. Anyway, since we have not found a new maid, I do most of the chores at home while at the same time taking care of the baby. It’s very tiring. Actually, my resistance weakened and I succumbed to cough and colds in the past week because of exhaustion. In fact, I had fever while we were at the Kerygma Conference. I’m not well still as of this writing but I continue to push myself to do some chores and to take care of my son.

As I pondered on Bro. Bo’s words, I kept reminding myself that my son is more important than keeping the house clean and tidy. I kept asking God to grant me grace to bear in mind that I don’t really need to keep the house spic and span if it would mean that I would get cranky towards my precious little one. He’s much more important. On some days, God’s grace both restrain and sustain me. But there were also days when I was able to spank my little one, much to my regret. Like when he kept on pulling out the books from the shelves and scattering them on the floor, when he kept pulling on the Christmas balls from the tree as if picking fruits from a tree and when he grabbed his sipping cup from my hand while I was refilling it with water and it fell and water was spilled all over our dining table and floor. I kept saying “no” but he simply went on and on smiling at me as he ran and pulled either the books or the Christmas balls.

Then, one time, as I was reading a magazine for parents, it dawned on me that I might be expecting too much from my one year old son. I’m definitely sure that he understands me when I say no. But it struck me that maybe he’s really still in a very playful stage wherein he likes to elicit some reaction from me as he does those things. He simply doesn’t understand or know yet that Mommy gets tired picking after him.

This morning, after feeding him his breakfast and playing with our keyboards, Yanthy started to get bored on his high chair. He wanted to go down from his chair and was starting to cry. Then I thought of bringing him out for a walk around our condo compound. I hurriedly grabbed a bib and let him wear his sunglasses and crocs. Then out we went.

Initially, I was only thinking of letting him walk on the walk ways around the buildings but I thought that it would not be enough activity for him to release his almost boundless energy so I decided to bring him all the way to the playground in our clubhouse.

After an hour, I realized that it was a great idea! We both enjoyed walking around waving and saying “hi” and “good morning” to the plants, flowers, butterfly, trees and neighbors. We enjoyed playing at the slide and the toy houses in the playground. And we enjoyed playing by the kiddie pool dangling our feet on the water and Yanthy touching the water to make bubbles. When we came back to our condo unit, I was surprised that an hour has already passed since we went down to take a walk. I thanked God for this new idea. Yanthy was able to play without messing the house. And both of us were able to exercise through walking. Next time, when he no longer has colds, I would let him take a dip in the kiddie pool.

Yanthy and I had our morning snack after our walk. He had milk and biscuits while I had a banana. After that, he got drowsy and fell asleep in my arms.

I then put him in his crib, swept the floor and cooked my lunch. I was even able to write this new entry for my blog.

I felt very good after that experience. I thanked God for another creative way of playing with my son and bonding with him without having to raise my voice or spank him. I pray for more creativity so my son and I would have more happy and memorable moments together; while at the same time, doing the important things I need to do at home. Moreover, I pray for grace for me to exercise more flexibility in my daily schedule so I would be able to prioritize spending quality time with my baby over maintaining the house. I know that motherhood is not really easy; but I’m optimistic that as I pray, God would be there supply me with all the necessary graces and Mama Mary would be there to intercede and guide me.

No comments:

Post a Comment