Tears & Abundance

by flowers on April 30, 2010 · 24 comments

Tears & Abundance

I’ve shed some major tears in the past 36 hours.

I don’t tell you this for pity or condolences (it’s actually quite hard for me to admit), but rather for the sake of authenticity. I know I’m not alone in feeling overwhelmed by life in our fast-paced world, parenting in a new paradigm, working towards economic self-reliance or adding a new little one to an already full, but tiny house. In a rational mind it makes perfect sense that I’m feeling in over my head, but I’m pregnant so let’s keep rational minds right out of this one.

Thinking about this blog has only added to the anxiety as I asked myself: How can I offer uplifting ideas when I feel quite the opposite. How can I ask someone else to find a wider perspective when I can’t? Who wants to hear me whine anyways?

I’ve heard that a lot of mom’s are feeling very frustrated with certain aspects of this bloggy-blog world. You want to be inspired, but seeing picture after picture of perfect homes and dinners and great ideas can all lead to a wacked out perspective. I certainly do not want to add to that and it was never my intention to write a one-dimensional blog. This is our journey and sometimes you get stuck in the mud or lost in the quagmire.

Last spring I told you about a new group I joined with the kids. They are all life-learning families and we gather at different state parks around the town once a week. It is a very diverse group of people and I find the conversations and ideas that come from the group to be some of the most intelligent and inspiring aspects of my community experience.

I haven’t been going for most of the winter because Stone takes over as the main caregiver and he wasn’t pulled to go and I’ve learned to let him parent his way. I went last week for the first time which felt nice, but I didn’t feel like going today. I went for the kids because I know they love playing with all the kids. I did it for our family because I know it’s important to keep community ties open and strong. I did it for me because I know I can’t do this alone.

Between the fresh air, warm sun and soothing waterfall I started to feel a little better. Friends began to ask me about how the business was doing and what my birth plans were. Talking about it all felt a little better.

It felt good to be related too.

A friend gave me two new birth books she had saved for me.

I felt touched that someone thought of me.

I had a heart-to-heart with another friend who asked the right questions and gave the right feedback.

It felt good to be heard.

She asked me if anyone was organizing a meal train for me after the baby was born and she told me she would love to do that for me.

It felt good to have someone take care of me.

A woman I had never met before brought four plastic shopping bags full of cloth diapers and covers and was excited to pass them on to me.

If felt good to have my needs taken care of effortlessly.

One of the crafty mama’s was making abundance bells and she made me one. It’s beautiful. She made it for me right there at the picnic table and told me “the rules”. She told me to use the bell to ask for abundance in my life: abundance of serenity when the kids where driving me crazy and abundance of happy times with my husband when the business is all we can seem to talk about. She asked that every night before bed I fall asleep to give thanks for the abundance bell and the abundance in my life.

As she told me all of this people sitting around me all chimed in with their own stories and affirmations.

It felt good to be inspired. It feels good to feel supported.

I drove home with happy, well-excercised children and I felt lighter. It had felt good to cry (and there still might be more tears) and I have a feeling that letting myself really feel those feelings opened myself up to receive the support, love and abundance gifted to me this afternoon.

I think I’ve been trying to do this all alone and that is a heavy weight on one person’s shoulders and it’s a weight that can break you.

I kept trying to feel abundant and grateful, but it didn’t work as long as I wasn’t honoring my true feelings–as long as I wasn’t making it okay to feel overwhelmed and scared.

And that brings me back to a parenting truth that I believe deep in my being: that our job is to honor our children’s feelings, not fix them. Who are we to be humans if not to experience the full range of emotions and sometimes those emotions aren’t happy. I think feeling them all the way through makes room for true happiness.

At least that’s how it feels right now as I sit and honor my tears and allow my abundance.

I was poking around looking for an old post and I found this one instead. It is a poignant reminder for me: it is not this child that is scary, but rather the arrival of this child that is unearthing my authentic feelings and shining light where I’ve been hiding. Aren’t children so good at that? They just keep asking me to grow. And so grow and learn I will.

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{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

Michelle April 30, 2010 at 4:38 am

What a beautiful, beautiful post. Thank you for sharing! It is an amazing feeling, when people think of you, reach out and support you, especially when it is unexpected!

Could you share a picture of your abundance bell? I’ve never heard of that before, it sounds lovely.

Thanks again for posting! :)


flowers April 30, 2010 at 6:34 pm

I am certain there will be a picture soon!


miranda April 30, 2010 at 9:23 am

I, for one, am sooooooo happy you have started to join us again! I know we did not get to talk much, but just having you there is enough. Enjoy the books!


Mary Elizabeth April 30, 2010 at 3:18 pm

This post really spoke to me. Thank you!!! As a mother of four small children, sometimes I just want someone to meet my needs and to coddle me. I am glad to know I am not alone, thanks to your post! Just reading it has made me feel liberated…at least until naptime is over (ha ha)!!!


.-= Mary Elizabeth´s last blog ..Wisdom from a Child =-.


flowers April 30, 2010 at 3:24 pm

Ode to the sacred naptime! Thanks for commenting Mary :) It makes me feel better to know I’m not alone, too.


Jena April 30, 2010 at 5:27 pm

What a beautiful post. I don’t know how you young moms do the blogging thing. Because I was constantly second-guessing myself and trying to survive life, I’m sure I would never have been able to put together a coherent post! Only looking back with perspective can I find the ability to write. So hang in there! You are doing a great job.

With my second child, I had to talk myself into the fact that children are a blessing. I had to go out and buy some wall art to remind me of that fact. :)


flowers April 30, 2010 at 6:35 pm

Thanks a lot Jena. Sometimes I think blogging is what helps me get through the insanity. It’s a place to process my thoughts and experience and feel heard. Better than a journal imo.

(and still talking myself into the fact that more children are a blessing. )


Juliana April 30, 2010 at 5:27 pm

What an insightful and inspiring post. Thank you for spreading the goodness. I can absolutely empathize. I have an eight-month-old daughter (Luna), and, between the two jobs I’m working, taking care of her (her dad and I don’t do daycare or nanny … just two parents trading off), housework, and cooking, I get overwhelmed easily. I find that doing small things — 15 or 20 minutes of yoga here or there, meeting with other moms, reading while she sleeps — helps so much, though there are always those moment of overwhelming insecurity where I ask, “Can I really do this?” I know the answer … usually … but it takes a little reassurance now and then.

Thank you for your wisdom!
.-= Juliana ´s last blog ..Mama Gets Pampered =-.


flowers April 30, 2010 at 6:42 pm

I hear you. Thanks for stopping by–I just checked out your blog and loved your vibe and your last post about getting pampered. Good for you!


Kristina April 30, 2010 at 6:21 pm

That group sounds wonderful! To have a group not just for your children, but just as much for you!
.-= Kristina´s last blog ..A Taste. =-.


flowers April 30, 2010 at 6:42 pm

I feel so lucky!


Dionna @ Code Name: Mama April 30, 2010 at 10:32 pm

So glad I clicked over here from API Speaks (thank you, by the way for your comment. I really appreciated your view!). What a beautiful post. I have a community of AP/NP parents in my city, and I have tried to express before how very much they mean to me – you have summed up my feelings exactly! And I love your thought at the end about honoring our children’s feelings, not fixing them – such a profound truth.
.-= Dionna @ Code Name: Mama´s last blog ..The Joys of Breastfeeding a Toddler #4 =-.


Amber April 30, 2010 at 10:51 pm

I know what you mean about the blog perfection. It’s important to keep in mind that you’re only ever seeing a very specific snapshot. I really try to, with varying degrees of success, in any case.

And I also feel you on honouring feelings. I learned this in the trenches with my very spirited first child. She cried a LOT. I did my best to meet her needs and bring her comfort, and then I just had to learn to sit with her. I’m still not always so good at sitting with myself, though.
.-= Amber´s last blog ..Buying Local in Vancouver =-.


flowers April 30, 2010 at 11:04 pm

I think that can be one of the hardest things. My first was very colicky and you’re a new parent and doing everything you possibly can (and you’re sleep deprived) and they just cry. So hard to sit through and yet that’s all you can really do.


Kate May 1, 2010 at 7:38 am

Oh, Hill…I just love you.
You know I cried about half the time while pregnant with R. And I’m also one to take on everything myself…must be a gemini thing. ;)

So glad you’re part of an awesome group of families that took care of you when you needed it ~ how simply wonderful.
.-= Kate´s last blog ..My Everyday Magic 5.1.10 =-.


Zanna May 1, 2010 at 8:40 pm

Glad you are receiving some TLC, and letting yourself enjoy your wonderful community!
.-= Zanna´s last blog ..Caution: Speed Bumps =-.


Melodie May 2, 2010 at 12:57 am

This is so beautiful. I love how open and honest you are. You are so real. I totally feel that if we knew each other in real life we would be great friends, or at least I would see you and think “I really like her, I wonder if she likes me. I wonder if we can be friends.” Hugs. You are an amazing woman.


Juliana May 2, 2010 at 7:20 am

Hi, Hillary, I just responded at length to your post at my blog. It’s cool that we share these traits! We must be Gemini twins :). In my response to your post, I wrote that your blog, especially your last post, resonates with me … though I don’t think I mentioned that it’s because it’s so open and honest about what us mommas go through now and then.

Are you turning 30 this year? We should write a joint blog, where we write 30 things we want to do in the next year. Tara did something like this @ Organic Sister.
.-= Juliana´s last blog ..They Have Grown Wings, These Extraordinary People =-.


~Tara May 2, 2010 at 10:53 am

such a beautiful outpouring of emotion and truth and love and community. love the softer intensities of life. (((hugs)))
.-= ~Tara´s last blog ..Sculpting A New Passion =-.


Kelly May 2, 2010 at 7:56 pm

I have read this post a couple times tonight- it has made me feel better because last night was my night- my night to break down and admit that having a newborn, a four year old, a full time teaching job, and our summer move is getting the best of me in a big way. My husband just stood there and stared at me- like I was exploding-because I was, and then said- I’m so sorry- I had no idea you were feeling this way. It felt good to let it all out and admit that I am struggling and need more help. I always feel guilty for feeling this way b/c we are so blessed- I don’t want to seem ungrateful. I guess there is a difference between complaining and feeling overwhelmed…there is nothing I’d change except maybe a little more time to enjoy it all.

.-= Kelly´s last blog .. =-.


Hillary May 2, 2010 at 8:17 pm

I’m so happy you shared Kelly. My partner (as awesome as he is) at first tried to tell me to change my feelings and not focus on the sadness, but when the floodgates opened he just listened and held me and we sort of walked through everything together.

I know what you mean about feeling ungrateful. Someone will say, well what about the mother living through a war right now and sometimes it can be a helpful perspective, but sometimes it feels really inappropriate because it undermines how I’m feeling or somehow makes it like I’m not supposed to have a range of emotions because in many ways I am living a safe and healthy life.

Hope you’re feeling better.


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