BRAVE: Why I Don’t Have To Be Wonder Woman

Summer is here and our routine has gone out the open window. I haven’t written a word in two weeks. The pressure to perform and keep up relentlessly nags at my heels and pokes my brain.

Gotta, gotta, gotta….I thought summer was supposed to be a time to chill? Instead the refrain Gotta do, gotta keep and gotta go, roll through my thoughts and days. What’s up with that? Unfortunately it’s a byproduct of our incessantly busy society. A world that says that being still and unproductive is sin.

Gotta keep the kids busy! All day, every day, all summer long. Sometimes it is necessary to keep some children stimulated and busy for a time. I have such a child and my sanity stays with me if he has time to learn new things and within safe boundaries, go wild. The rest of the time is spent amusing himself by reading, building with his Legos and playing outside with friends. Keeping kids busy one hundred percent of the time is pure craziness. I just can’t keep that up. I only have so much energy to expend on shuttling and entertaining kids. I can only take so many people. (Introvert!) It also takes a small fortune to keep your kids busy!

Gotta do the usual routine; housework, baking, writing, etc. Because a lapse might mean we are just plain lazy, right? It might indicate something is wrong with us if we can’t keep all the balls juggling while adjusting to having children at home all day, all summer long. If my house is a wreck and I didn’t blog this week, it’s unacceptable.

Gotta do all the summer fun things that are advertised, plus keep up to what the Jones’ are doing on Facebook! Go to all the summer festivities and theme parks, beaches and museums. Keep that car or van gassed and revved to go! But don’t forget, we gotta keep the house up, dinner prepped, and the kids busy too! (But not on the computer, tv or video games. That would be a bad parent thing.)

Summer is already making me tired. On my keychain is a Lego Wonder Woman mini figure. I picked her as my superhero. In a family of boys, it is important for mom to have her own superhero. But I am not Wonder Woman. I can’t keep all the balls rotating.

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Come to think of it, I don’t even think Wonder Woman did it all. She worked with what she was given. She didn’t try to keep up with Hawk Girl or SuperGirl. (Sorry if I’m mixing DC and Marvel!!!I) They had their own gigs. She had hers. She focused on what she did best. I don’t think she saved the world by day and cleaned her house by night. It probably took a back seat to the criminals she chased and lassoed. After all the bad guys could get away but the dust and dirt, well they’d stick around for as long as they could. Priorities. I believe Wonder Woman had them. Mine get skewed as I listen to the cacophony in my head.

My problem is I get caught up in the gottas and forget the priorities. Like my kids aren’t going to be little forever. Resting is a command not an option. Taking care of my own needs and desires makes me a better mom. We were never meant to do it all or make our kids do it all.

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Wonder Woman, I’ll never be. We may eat hot dogs three nights out of four. My house will never be the cleanest or tidiest on the block. We won’t go to half the summer attractions out there and my kids will lose out according to society because they aren’t involved in every single activity we can fill our days with. That’s okay.

The bravest thing I can do for me and my family is to teach them they don’t need to be Super or Wonder anything. That the gottas can go take a hike. To use what we’ve been given and do our best. That dropping a ball is not the end of the world. It could be the beginning of a much clearer focus. That the kind of wonder that this world really needs can be found in the contentment of being present in the moment, even in the middle of a dirty house on a boring summer day.

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