Sunday, March 8, 2015

Baby of the Family

Newborn me (plus what's up with the eye?)

I am my mother's baby.  Now to give my sister Shelbi credit she is the youngest of us four sisters, but I am the the biological baby of our mother.  Confused? Well, to fill those in who aren't privy to my family's story my mom married my sister's dad when we were about three years old.  So, with that said, I am the baby in many ways.  Being the baby of the family has a lot of privileges to be sure, but one negative aspect is a lack of baby memorabilia.  The last born often ends up with an empty baby book.  I always give my mom a hard time because my baby book has pretty much nothing in it, no photos, no entries.  Now, to her defense she was raising three girls by herself, working two jobs most of the time and then later she was raising four girls! In her defense, she has given me many memories and taught me invaluable lessons that are more precious to me than any baby book.  Also, I must admit, I too have become one of those mothers!  My baby is going to be three in September and I do not have a baby book for him, nor has he made any appearances on this blog.  Why is this?

My beautiful mom with me.

I believe that time gets the best of us.  We want to have play time with our kids,  quality time with our husbands, quiet time alone, time to fold laundry, time to keep the house from falling apart, time in God's Word, and the list goes on.  Sometimes, I feel like the weight of being a mother is a heavy load to carry.  Not because it is drudgery, but instead due to the great importance placed on that role!  Not only are we called to be tender caregivers, chauffeurs, maids, cooks, nursers, playmates, referees, educators (both academically and spiritually), etc. but we feel the need to also be the historians of our children's childhoods.  Maybe, it is just me, but in this age of social media, of Facebook and blogs we can almost become overwhelmed with documenting every moment of our lives with photo posts, tweets, and texts.  For me personally, the feeling to "keep up with Jones'" can become overwhelming.  The feeling that "oh man, I need to do this with my kids..." or "I need to post this picture,"  otherwise I am not validated in my parenting.  Now, this is not me berating those who use Facebook or anything else.  This is simply my take on it all; how it has made me feel.  After all, here I am on social media writing a blog post.  However, blogging for me in many ways helps me remember that I am more than a mom or a wife.  It helps me keep in touch with the person I will continue to be even after my beautiful children are having little ones of their own.  I blog because I like to write and I blog because I to want to preserve in some small way the history of myself and my family.

Being a historian, I think, is part of the human condition.  There is a historian in all of us...we all want to leave our mark in some small way.  We want those who come after us to know that we existed. I mean look at trees, bridges, train cars, and sidewalks for example.  You can't go anywhere without seeing some sort of graffiti where someone has left their mark.   In many ways that is how I am also.  I want people to know that there was a girl named, Emily, whom many knew as Kati. She loved God, enjoyed reading books, was passionate about children, and was interested in anything foreign. She grew up wanting to convert Eddie Veder of Pearl Jam, so she could marry him. She was good at running the mile for track, but absolutely hated every race she was in.  She thought she might go into music, but instead ended up living in Romania for a while and coming home to study Sociology.   She married a wonderful man and became the mother of five great kids.  She lived and breathed and had an impact, maybe not an earth shattering impact,  but she did leave her mark on those she loved.

Me probably 3(what happened to all that blond hair)

So, with all that said, I too feel a little guilty about neglecting my baby Lige.  I will try in the next five blog posts to come up with a short update about all my children! They are precious to me and maybe in writing about them they will some day be able to look back on their childhoods and easily recall the blessings they were to me and many others!

Me with my kiddos

What are your thoughts?  Are any of you babies of the family with baby books lacking?  Are you mothers or fathers who feel the heavy load placed upon us?  How do you feel about the impact of social media on you as a parent?  Let me know, I'm curious.

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