Paradigm Shift

7:01 PM

 
The further into parenthood we get, the more our family culture takes shape. We're finding our footing, our ways of doing life, our traditions. I catch myself questioning what's accepted as "normal" more and more as my boys get older. The activities and tasks we are supposed to do, the schedules we should keep, the things we ought to be involved in- I'm finding those "shoulds" don't always fit in with our natural flow. And I'm attuning myself to that, because I don't want to waste our real time doing things I or others have it in our heads we are meant to do.

A lot of people thrive on a full agenda and lots of activities. They get together with friends all the time, volunteer to help with everything, plan parties, do sports and music. It works for them, energizes them, and helps them achieve goals and experiences they dream of. 

This has never been me. I fought the outward need to be busy all through high school, always trying to have my social, work, and school calendars filled to the brim. I felt like I was supposed to overachieve in any way possible and never turn down an opportunity presented to me. This way of thinking was so against my personal grain and I didn't even realize it until I embraced my inherent love for a slower pace and intrinsic and individualized gauge of what's good. 

Now with my boys, I feel such a need to protect their childhood and freedom, and not subject them to social norms at the cost of our precious, far-too-short time together to be little and play. I want to feel out their needs, and always always listen to my instincts. People ask me all the time when and where I'm putting Milo into preschool, and I almost feel awkward telling them preschool isn't in my plans at all. For Milo personally, I know he will continue to thrive at home where he can explore and grow and learn with me at his own pace. 

I refuse to let social norms and stigmas dictate the way I mother. I'm asking questions, learning all I can about my options, and then feeling out the path that resonates most with me. I'm standing resilient to the criticism, judgement, and lack of support that may come from others who do things differently. There's no need to constantly defend decisions that we reach with prayer and careful research, and that's good enough for me. 

I will let my children be little. I will be all in as a mother. I will protect our time together and our raw, bare love with my entire being. These boys are my greatest joy and life's most wonderful adventure, and I won't sell us short in trying to conform. Life may look different in the Hansen household, but it will forever be a house of love, "a house of prayer, a house of faith, a house of learning, a house of glory, a house of order, a house of God".   
 

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