Everyday lives of the Meabon Household

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

A Mother's Voice - Courtney

Give a big ol' Texas howdy to our Canadian contributor, Courtney!  Courtney's husband, Chris, and my husband, Jared, have a man crush on each other - and they are totally comfortable with it.  They are best friends who met while playing college golf.  Fast forward 11 years post graduation and they have a constant, on-going conversation via text.  And I mean constant!  There are times when Courtney and I wonder if they talk to each other more than they talk to us.  But I am so lucky that my husband's BFF is married to someone that I adore.  I just wish they lived closer to us than Toronto.  You might have heard me refer to Courtney and Chris as my parental encyclopedia.  These two superheros have 4 children....the oldest being 5.  No, that's not a typo.  I said FOUR children, the oldest being FIVE.  How's that for a reference source to have on speed dial?  And without further ado, I give my blog over to Courtney.

Would a rose by any other name smell as sweet

Would a Mom by any other name be... as loving, nurturing, protective, hard working, sleep deprived. The list goes on and on and the descriptives change depending on who you ask. It has changed for me over the years especially depending on what stage of life I was in.

The path that I have traveled on to become a mother was not without its road bumps and mishaps. As a child I was raised believing that I could do, be or accomplish anything if I set my mind and heart to it. What I didn't realize was that at some point I was going to have to make some tough decisions on where my path was going to lead me.

Some people are lucky enough to know from a very early age what they want to do with their life. I always knew that I wanted to have a family and more than anything be a mom. Yet, I also wanted to be successful in a career. I always assumed that these two objectives would mesh seamlessly together... little did I know how difficult a choice every woman has to make once they become a Mom.

Chris and I married in 2002 and were very young compared to today's standards, I was 23 and he 24. I have always had a plan for my life that was based on this imaginary timeline. I wanted to have kids right away and the thought of having kids in my 30's seemed ridiculous because I was going to be so old! Ha, if I could go back in time and smack myself I would, but even then I'm sure young me still wouldn't have listened.

Unfortunately, it took Chris and I a few years to conceive but with a little fertility help we had our first daughter in 2006. Then it seemed like we figured things out in the baby making department as the next 3 babies followed in 2007, 2009 and 2011. I also have to mention in the year that we decided not to have a kid, Chris surprised me with a puppy!

Fennen born in 2006

Ryder born in 2007

Max born in 2008

Lexie born in 2009 - This was the first birth my mom was part of

Jared born in 2011

I remember in the two years that we were trying to conceive I struggled a lot with what being a mom was and what it would mean to me. I had always taken it for granted that I would be able to have children and that it was just a matter of determining when the right time would be. I suddenly started to think about what my life would be like once we did have a baby.

The idea of having to leave my precious baby in the care of someone else was something I had never really given much thought too. I wanted to be the one who shaped and molded this little bundle into the person she was to become. I wanted to be there for all of her firsts, I wanted to be able to wipe the tears away and join in on the laughs - but to do this meant I couldn't return to work.

Now I have to admit, I was mixed on if I would be able to handle being at home all day every day with only babies and toddlers to entertain me. I enjoyed certain aspects of the working world, mainly adult conversation, showering every day, wearing nice clothes, the ability to eat out at a restaurant - all the little things that I used to take for granted.

Luckily, I had the opportunity to return to work for 4 months before having Ryder. This short little return was enough for me to realize that I was willing to sacrifice whatever it took for me to remain home with the kids. I found my true calling - and it was being a mom.

Hindsight being 20/20, I wish I had known what a difficult emotional decision it would be to choose work over family. Maybe "choose" isn't the correct word, but I spent so many years stressing over my education and career path only to discover that in the end I was meant to stay at home with my kids. I realize I am very fortunate in having the ability to stay home to raise my children and many woman do not have this luxury. I think even if I hadn't decided to be a SAHM I would have been forced to once we had Lexie as I would need an extra job just to pay for daycare.

In the five years that I have been blessed to be a mom I have learned so much about myself and grown in leaps and bounds. I have gained a true appreciation for the following sayings, "one day you're going to have a child just like you" or "don't sweat the small stuff, its all small stuff", or "take it one day at a time, or even an hour if you have too", or "this too shall pass".

I also feel a tremendous pressure to raise my children with manners and morals. I am their number one role model. When I have a bad day and raise my voice, I can't be surprised in the days that follow when the kids in turn begin yelling at each other. My job is to make sure that each one of my children feel loved, that they know they are beautiful both inside and out, that they have the ability to do anything and everything they can possibly dream of, that they have empathy and most importantly that they stay young for as long as possible and have as much fun as possible.

Ryder, Lexie, Fennen and Jared

The pay for being a Mom is pretty dismal but I love being paid in "I love you's", spontaneous kisses, creative art projects and a look on their face that says I am their number one. One day they may choose to be parents too and I hope when they reflect back over their upbringing they have the same appreciation I now have for what my mom did for me.

My Mom aka Grammy and me in 2010


boo and stacy said...

FOUR kids, I'm impressed!! Precious pics of all your kiddos! And I get that the husbands are friends, so did you name your 4th after Mr. Meabon? What an honor!!!

JeanetteSchenk said...

Beautifully written Courtney! What an amazing tribute to motherhood and a precious legacy to your children. Happy Mother's Day!