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Lunacy

By Justine Dorton

I love being a mother.

I love playing tag in the back yard.
I love reading together in bed.
I love making cheerio necklaces.
I love hearing the kids roar into the house after school.
I love singing showtunes and dancing in the family room.
I love sitting on the bed having a ‘heart-to-heart’ with one of the kids.
I love listening to my two year old belly laugh.

There are just so many things that I love about this time of my life.

So why is it that I found myself yesterday hiding in the master bathroom with a Haagen-Dazs Chocolate Almond Ice Cream bar? Why was I so excited to escape to my Relief Society meeting last week? Why do I collapse into bed every night and listen so happily to the silence?

I am a flesh of contradiction. I eschew what I love. I revel in the solitude I used to lament. I hide chocolate around the house for an emergency.

Madness, I tell ya’. Madness.

About Justine Dorton

Justine is a mother to five children, and has a husband lodged somewhere (probably in the den). She is not very fond of speaking of herself in third person.

25 thoughts on “Lunacy”

  1. Beautiful, Justine! I get it, and am right there with you on the chocolate. What an interesting phenomenon. I think, with just one, the contrast is not quite as stark as you describe yet, but it's there. Oh yes, it's there.

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  2. Love this post… so many times we get caught up in the hectic-ness of mothering and forget to DO the things we love with our kids, but I am a happier mother when I do.

    When I was on swim team in high school, we would work ourselves to the bone during the season, but before finals we would cut back a little, and give our bodies a bit of a rest. Isn't that what the moments of solitude at night, or the hidden moment with the Haagen Daz is all about? If it was mommy time all the time, it would be less fun.

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  3. You could say life is a balancing act..but then you'd also have to say that in the balancing act you're thrown bowling balls, children, typewriters and other fun but encumbering objects. All with an audience who wasn't told what kind of act this is and wonders what in the world you're doing.

    Good post, I'm with you. And where do I get one of those Hagen dad yummies?

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  4. It's Opposition in All Things. On crack. *snort

    My favorite hide-it-so-the-kids-don't-find-it treat is PB m&m's. Unfortunately, hubby things I'm actually buying them for him. Silly hubby!

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  5. Justine,
    I am right there with you. I love, love, love my kids and all the cute and sweet things they do. I love holding hands as we cross the parking lot. But I am so glad to get a break.

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  6. It's a love/hate realationship. I love my little ones dearly and enjoy them most of the time, but they certainly do things I hate. (Like Barbies in the toilet again!)

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  7. I stay up way too late just to get some solitude.

    A-MEN, sista!

    I loved missionary work, but golly-gee, did I love P-days and bedtime!

    I actually don't think this is lunacy at all. If all that filled us was motherhood, I think we might be a wee bit out of balance. Don't get me wrong, but imo, moms should not live *only* for motherhood. We are also daughters of God, wives, individuals, daughters, sisters, aunts, friends….

    And appreciaters of good things like Haagen-Dazs.

    And m&ms! 🙂

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  8. One of my favorite quotes pretty much says it all:

    "To have children is a double living, the earthly fountain of youth, a continual fresh delight, and also a source of weariness beyond description." Josephine W. Johnson

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  9. I totally had these contradictory feelings this week and wrote about it on my own blog. Ok really I have them everyday. And I too feel a little guilty when I want to run and hide and eat chocolate. But I know if I did run I would always, always want to come back.
    Ginger – you explained it absolutely perfectly.

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  10. Eastcoasttransplant, that's a FABULOUS quote. Love it.

    And Justine, I love my kids but can't wait to get away from them sometimes. And when I do get away, I forget about them entirely and don't even think to miss them. And then I'm *really* happy to see them when I come back.

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  11. aw shucks, you guys. I feel downright regular. Thanks.

    Zina, my husband and I went on an Alaskan cruise a few years ago, and someone said something to me about missing the kids while we were gone. I felt SO guilty, because I COMPLETELY forgot about the kids for that whole week. I was so happy to see them again at the end, but I didn't fret for one instant while I was gone. Glad to know I'm not alone.

    And great quotation eastcoast!

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  12. So with you. I have that contradiction all the time. I always tell my kids, "You have to go to bed now so I can miss you for a SECOND and be happy to see you tomorrow." Also the contradiction that the kids are thronging around me and I want to be alone but also I'm kind of lonely.

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  13. Wouldn't trade the maddness for anything in the world. My children are my brightest joy! And still, I often find myself hiding in my closet with a chocolate bar, relishing the silence and smiling to know nobody knows I am there eating it! 🙂

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  14. "Have JOY in your children" is the yiddish greeting between mothers. I find such wisdom in it, because it is an injunction, an invitation and a reminder all in one little phrase. I believe the Lord wishes us to rejoice in our posterity,today and in our memories, and in the hopefully many days to come. I also believe that there "needs be opposition in all things," if we know no misery we know no joy. Thus, we are sometimes miserable when they misbehave, so we can rejoice when they choose well and show us that all we do is not in vain. I too feel the compelling need to carve out mommy time on a daily basis and I hope to be justified in its positive effects that render a happier and refreshed mother that can now chase, tickle, draw, and think up yet another 3 minute craft with minimum mess quotient. HAVE JOY IN YOUR CHILDREN.

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  15. Thanks for this post. This is just how I feel this week… er, and most of the time.
    My kids are great, but OH DO I LOVE BEDTIME! Sometimes I feel selfish for wanting them to go to bed a little extra early. But I think if I didn't get those extra minutes to refill my soul, I wouldn't have as much to give. Not selfish?
    Anyhow, thanks.

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  16. Here´s today´s: Brown paper sac, googooley eyes of many sizes, pom poms, crayons, tacky glue but not white glue since that is always messy. Let them create a puppet, the trick is to make one yourself and don´t be conventional. My little three year old´s has about fifteen eyes and is covered in pom poms, enjoy.

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