Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Motherhood Matters

Wow, there are a lot of little kids running around here. Hey, look at those big people chairs across the room. Do you think we can make it? Let’s go for it. Be careful where you step, there are some crawlers mixed in with the toddlers.
Ew, what’s that smell? Yeah, I think so, too. Whaddya mean, if we ignore it then it will go away? Believe me, that kind of smell only gets worse with time. There have got to be diapers around here somewhere. What? There aren’t? I don’t believe it. Well, if you seriously can’t find any, then we can always use book pages. How about his one? What’s it called? Motherhood Matters by Connie E. Sokol. That sounds appropriate. Hm. It’s not very big, though. Just 6 by 7 inches and 114 pages, kind of like a special candy box. Let’s open it.
Wait just a minute, I changed my mind. I’m not tearing any pages out of this book. It’s full of delicious tidbits of wisdom and humor, just the right size for a busy mother to pluck out a gem of sanity on the fly. Go ahead and use a dishtowel or something, I’m going to read some more.
Do you hear that? Someone’s coming. It looks like a walking package. Whatever they’ve got is so big, I can’t even see their head. Can you see who it is?
Oh, it’s Connie E. Sokol herself, and she brought diapers! A lot of diapers. Way to go Connie, woo-hoo! How did you know we needed those? It seems that you’ll need to be saving some for your new little one. Lucky for you that you have other potential diaper changers at your house.
Connie: There are definite perks to having a caboose, especially at 46! My other children are the hands I didn't have when I had four children six and under. Those were stressful days:)
Shirley: I really like the short chapters in your book. Was that by design or serendipity?
Connie:  Absolutely by design. I wanted something a woman could pick up after a long day of mothering and say, "I need to be rejuvenated." Short, to the point, but uplifting, that's what I need after a tough day, or any day.
Shirley: Look out for the dripping binky flying through the air! Wow, you have quick reflexes! Did you study about loving children when they’re unlovable and lightening up from books, or did you learn your mothering wisdom by field research?
Connie: Both, which I think is how most moms learn. Talking with other women, reading the parenting books (and often rolling your eyes), and learning everyday on-the-job. With every child, I've learned so much not only about being a mother but about myself. I LOVE being at the stage of having older children because you get to see them through all those major stages. Once my son went to college I had a better feel for, oh, those were just stages he was going through. Hello. So I love that after six children, I still feel clueless in a lot of things, but other things I feel like, "Bring it on" because you just get wise to some of the things that will be coming.
Shirley: I think we’d all like to be loved when we’re acting unlovable. Ack. Someone very small is sitting on my foot. Aw, look at that toothless smile. I’d better appreciate this moment with this infant, as it only comes around once. Or, in your case, seven times. How did you learn to appreciate your moments with your children?
Connie: I think it's a daily thing, and a timeline thing. When they were all young, it was really hard to appreciate moments with my children because so many of them were in a sleep-deprived state (that would be me) or hormone haze. Sister Marjorie Pay Hinckley wisely said, "There are some years we won't want to remember." Amen! But as I've gotten older--another plus for aging--I've learned better to sort what matters most and drop what doesn't. And without guilt. I've learned to have more fun and to let things go (i.e. another broken wii controller, the boys' bathroom that NEVER seems to stay clean, etc.) And to make a more conscious effort to be in the present and make a simple memory. The other night it was surprisingly nice weather so I said let's pack a quick picnic basket, just what we had in the house, and go to the park. So all eight of us, 18 down to six, ate and played and hung out together, laughing and having fun. Notwithstanding the usual fusses, it was just such a beautiful connecting night. That's the moments I've really learned to appreciate. You don't have to schedule a week-long trip to Disneyland to make a memory.   
Shirley: Although Disneyland might work, too! I absolutely loved your reminder that “…daily we’re not just doing tasks…We are showing love to those who matter most.” It really put housework and mundane chores in perspective. Of course, I’ll probably have to refer to your inspiring book at least once a week to keep all these cheerful gems of wisdom in the forefront of my thoughts. Are you planning on writing other books?
Connie: Yes, I have another one in the works (besides a romance novel available in at the end of May). This one will draw more from many women's experiences so it's not just me blah-blahing.
Shirley: I happen to like your blah-blah’s. It’s been so nice talking to you. Wow, look at the time! No wonder I’m hungry. Do you want the soggy graham crackers or the half-eaten strained peas?
Connie: How about we focus on "Joy in Motherhood" this week and I take us all to lunch. All for the cause, of course.
Shirley: That sounds better than spreading peas on graham crackers and calling it a “mother moment.”
Connie: That could work, too. Don't forget the peanut butter, it covers a multitude of cooking sins…
Shirley: Ooo, and peanut butter and chocolate are SO GOOD together! Thanks for joining us, Connie. Wow, you changed that diaper so fast I didn’t even notice except that the air suddenly smells fresher! Thanks for sharing your wisdom.
Please order Connie’s book at: Order Motherhood Matters!
You can visit her website for media, video, podcasts, reviews, and more fun at:
Find the joy!

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