I’m a Tree; She’s a Bird

I'm a tree; She's a bird - motherhood

“I feel scared about facing this week,” I said to my husband yesterday. That sounds rather pathetic, especially when I write it down like that.  But it’s true! I have this fear, anxiety you might call it.  Matt is away, which isn’t unusual, but I am feeling so weary at the end of this school term. The kids are weary too, so right now, it’s like the wheels are coming out from underneath me and ahead I picture myself with gravel rash on my face. The kids are bickering more than usual and my patience is thin. Very thin.  
The very thought of going to three parent/teacher interviews by myself, juggling the kids during the interviews (or trying to organise a babysitter), cross country day, an oral assignment due, making sure everyone has the right uniform on and food to eat makes me want to sob.  I guess part of the fear is that I won’t be able to get through it the way I want to: with graceful patience.  Looking ahead at this week, I see myself snapping at the kids at every turn, trying to maintain the peace and dragging myself through.  You know what? I may even reschedule those parent/teacher interviews.
This morning, as I was getting lunches ready, Miss 10 hands me this note explaining, “Mum, you’re like a tree. And I am like a bird. You are beautiful like a tree and give me a home — shelter — and food.”
Then off she went. She may never know how much it helped me today. She may never realise how that one burst of sunshine will carry me through this week. What a beautiful picture to hold!  One day, I hope she will read this and know special she is and how much I treasured her words.  In a way, the picture she gave helped me refocus and I can see past the moment of overwhelm.
Overwhelm: it tends to shift my focus to a very narrow-minded state and I anticipate what I see through those unedifying glasses.  I’m on my skate board, let’s say, and the wheels are wobbling and I’m trying so hard not to hit the curb on the side of the road…trying so hard not to hit the curb; DON’T HIT THE CURB KELLY!! (And yet, it’s all I see, and I hit it).  And yet, when I take the glasses off, and see the big picture, there’s only a little curve there really, and I can look around the bend.  I remember my driving instructor (a very long time ago) telling me the same about steering a car around a corner: look around the bend, not at the bend! Ha! It’s interesting the things you remember sometimes!
If there are any other mamas out there feeling weary, remember we are trees, and we are beautiful and strong, even if our branches are drooping a little. And as mothers, we have the privilege to create that haven for the precious little ones in our care. Water will come.
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Kelly loves life at both ends of the spectrum: wearing high heel shoes one day and hiking boots the next; sipping tea out of a pretty cup and slurping hot coffee from a camping mug; challenging herself physically and stopping for quiet unhurried moments to feel the wind on her face. Kelly and her husband Matthew seek to live a fun and adventurous life with their four children and pet bird.

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  1. Deb says

    What a lovely note. You know, the older my daughter gets the more I realize that I am not cut out for having more than one child! You’re doing a great job.

  2. says

    What a beautiful soul your daughter is. I adore the picture. What amazing things our kids can give us. And that’s the lovely thing about this story: in seeing the beauty of you she creates beauty. Full circle.

  3. Mellie says

    Oh, I needed to read that right now, this morning before heading out to work. Thank you! I feel I am missing my motherhood as I have to work full-time. The workload is particularly stressful this week and my mothering / household role is slipping away from me. I have multiple sclerosis and the constant fatigue is heavy to carry this morning after two sleepless nights awake with a poorly toddler. The school appointments, dentist and birthday parties ate thick on the calendar and i desparately need to ficus on pulling it all out the bag this week! I wasn’t sure how I was going to put my smile on and get out the door this morning but your daughter’s wise words have touched me too! Clever girl and thoughtful mummy to share. I hope your week is beautiful and happy – these are the days we will look back on and cherish, and we’ll forget the bends in the road as we survey the beautiful view! Thank you x

    • Nicole says

      Hi Mellie. You mentioned you have MS and I was wondering if you have heard of HSCT treatment? I know a woman who has received this treatment in Russia and has improved so much she no longer has any walking devices and does not take any medication. I don’t believe the treatment is readily available in Australia. I know my comment isn’t in relation to the above beautiful article, but when I read that you have MS I felt I should mention HSCT to you. I think the website is called something like Moving Mountains to Beat MS.
      All the best :)

  4. Kate Russell says

    This is so beautiful, it made me tear up! What a lovely, compassionate soul your Miss 10 has. All I keep thinking is how reflective our children are of us and how she must have the most loving, compassionate Mum guiding her through life. You must be so proud!

  5. Denyse says

    Kel, I hear you on the narrowing of views as we stress along our daily journey.. And then, pop! Your miss 11 who I do believe is a sensing sort of soul gives you this. Wow! Eyes wide opened & all senses focused all around you. Beautiful! Big hugs Denyse

  6. says

    Hi Kelly, I think so many Mums would be able to relate to your post … I know I sure did. Aren’t kids amazing (almost instinctive) when they become that little ray of sunshine in the middle of the storm. Don’t know if it will help but when I felt overwhelmed I tried to not look too far ahead and just took things one day at a time. Just focus on today and tomorrow will take care of itself!

  7. says

    So glad I came over tonight… this is so uplifting for me right at this moment. My husband heads off tomorrow and I can feel that overwhelm creeping over me. So I have sat down here saying to myself: ‘Don’t panic, PLAN.’ I need babysitters, shopping lists, meal plans, weekend plans and self-care plans!!

  8. says

    It has been a very long term!!! I for one can’t wait until the holidays. My hubby works very long hours so these sort of things always fall on my shoulders too, I’m sitting here blogging with a glass of wine in one hand, the kids are in bed and I am enjoying a bit of “me” time…we all need it sometimes!!

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