There is so much out there in the world today about living intentionally, mothering intentionally. Being mindful of your thoughts, words, actions, time. I will admit to having hopped on the bandwagon, drinking the pre-verbial kool-aid and trying my best to live my moments with intention. I mean what a great way to be! To mother my children with intention. The love my friends and family in an mindful way. But living with so much meaning, no one bothered to mention how freaking hard and exhausting it is! Seriously, I’m pooped.

I guarantee that I’m over thinking my intentional way of living. As I tend to over think much of what I do. Am I super present right now as my 12 year old is engaging me about his video game. I should fake interest so that he feels valued and loved and heard. With all honesty though – I DON’T CARE and worse, I feel guilty that I don’t care.  So I sit and I continue to listen. Fake it till you make it or die of boredom. Sometimes this intentional way of living makes me feel worse than I did prior to being cognizant of being so mindful. I shouldn’t have to fake it when I’m spending time with the fruit of my loins or the child God has blessed me with, but the fact is that I can only handle so much Zelda, or High School Musical or Barbie or whatever the coolest thing at the moment is. Sometimes I just want to be intentionally quiet, with no one sharing anything with me so I can be intentional about reading my US weekly.

See this fad or wave or new theory of parenting and living is wonderful. It’s a noble way to view life. It’s a goal to aim towards if you find you aren’t engaged or connected with your family or friends. But it’s a suggestion, not a law. I, like many, have my favorite blogs to read – today’s version of Ann Landers or Dear Abby, and I find the ones I love are the ones who discuss this way of life. But like many, I find that I can not live up to the version or standard that I create in my mind as I read about some amazing blogger who has got all her eggs in one basket, from her own chickens, on her homestead, where she lives, whips up raw-milk butter and homeschools her six children all while looking the part of an Anthropology model.

So I’ve made a decision – I need to create my OWN version of intentional thinking.  I need to demonstrate grace and love to my kids and be honest. I need to be engaged when I have the luxury of one on one time with my kids. If I’m not into what we’re talking about, my kids know, “Mom, you really don’t care about this, do you?” my answer is “NO.” Because they also need to understand that the world won’t stop for them. That sometimes they can be boring and that’s okay, but they need to recognize that glazed over look in people they meet so not to further embarrass themselves. That they are not the center of the universe, but despite that, I love them, with all my heart. I have to wonder that with all this intentional living are we giving SO much of ourselves that our children never see the other side. The side where they explore, or do things for themselves, not really to share with others. If you are constantly engaged and cheered on, whether what you are doing is noteworthy or not is that setting you up for failure when someone finally tells you, “I don’t care.” If I continue to give EVERYTHING at EVERY moment am I really teaching you something good?

The short answer is no. My kids know I love them. They know they can come to me for anything and everything and I won’t judge them. We talk, we share, we’ve always done this and sometimes we’re equally interested and sometimes it’s a tad one sided. It goes both ways. I recognize moments that are fleeting and try my hardest to take a mental (or real) picture and file it in my heart. I journal. I know that my kids won’t want to snuggle with me forever, or be tucked in, or always need me, but I want them to look back and know that they were loved, that I had their back, and that I did my best to preserve my own sense of self worth. I do that because someday they would be on their own, with their own families, living their own intentional lives and I would need to stand on my own two feet not as mommy, but as Annie. Mindful Annie.

So do yourself a favor if you haven’t joined this movement. Just live, just love, just be present when you are actually present with someone. THIS is the key to intentional living.

1 comment

Erni - January 28, 2014 - 9:47 am


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