Picture if you will: A dimension beyond that which is known to men-a dimension as vast as housecleaning and timeless as infinite childish questions. It is the middle ground between cold coffee and bedtime stories, between diaper changes and PTO meetings, between peace and chaos. It has the ability to transform extrovert into introvert and lies within adorable “feels” and the peak of anxiety. This is the dimension of parenthood. You’ve entered; The Mom Zone.
Have you ever found yourself in the mom zone? Where you are in a haze, but don’t really know that you are in a haze, then you snap back to the present. “Wait. What was I doing? Where are my kids? Wait, did I just forget my kids were even here? Oh no! They are being suspiciously quiet. Back to work.” Sound familiar? Oh, the common and irrefutable phenomenon; Mom Brain.
I asked my friends to contribute this week. Here are a few signs that you have a case of
If you call every other family member’s name (including pets) before you actually call the correct child…you might have mom brain.
If you ever use the word “potty” while speaking to adults…you might have mom brain.
If you still rock back and forth while standing in church, but all your holding is a hymnal…you might have mom brain.
If you ever panic and ask who is watching the baby, while the baby is on your lap…you might have mom brain.
I fell into the Mom Zone yesterday. It was lunchtime, all was well, and then I looked down. I had disposed of the crusts from a sandwich and had cut it into little edible triangles. Not really a big deal, but it was my sandwich. Both of my children were already happily eating at the table. I completely zoned out and was on auto-mom-pilot. I was embarrassed. Funny how such a tiny thing can embarrass me. But the Mom Zone is so much more than just suffering from mom brain. When you enter the Mom Zone so many things change, that if you examine your life before kids, you wouldn’t believe it was possible.
When I was pregnant with Becky, my first child, my husband and I took a trip to the grocery store and were loading things up on the moving register belt. A 3-liter of soda fell from the belt, and before I knew it, I leapt and caught it with my left hand before it touched the ground. Wha-? Me? Did I just show some mad mom ninja skills before I even became a mom? My husband and I couldn’t believe it. I’m not left-handed, my hand-eye coordination is terrible, and I was pretty far along in my pregnancy (think beached whale). I avoided sporty activities even before I was doing so with my 4-year old boy, cause…yeah…he aims right for your face.
The Mom Zone has the ability to multiply our emotions times 100. You never know what each day will bring. The tiniest thing can create a whirlwind of emotions. You can be laughing and having silly tickle fights with your kids, but once bedtime rolls around, you’re ugly crying into your pillow. I mentioned before that I was embarrassed by the sandwich incident. A tiny thing, but it had the capability to serve as a catalyst to a mom explosion if I wasn’t careful. My 4-year old and 6-year old noticed what I had done and they called me on it. It’s certainly not their fault for being observant, but with their giggles and pointing, The Mom Zone could have taken over. I could have started crying, I could have shot them a dirty look, or maybe even yelled at them. These are scary thoughts, and thankfully I had the good sense to take a breath and move on. Maybe some of you have had an experience like this? It is normal. These things don’t make you a bad mom. These things don’t have to fuel more anxiety. Just remember that you are on a learning curve every single day. Each experience will serve you better in the future.
Finally, the Mom Zone has an amazing power for good, and allows us to live out the fruits of the spirit that God has charged us to possess.
Joy-When your child tells you a joke that is older than dirt, but you laugh anyways.
Patience-Potty Training…need I say more?
Faithfulness-When your child is looking for a specific little toy that came from one of their many tiny character play-sets, and you vow to search in every nook and cranny until you find it so your child can be happy.
Self-Control-When your grade-school children decide to talk in baby talk, and then they convince five other cousins to do so, and you’re gritting your teeth to get through the annoyance.
Kindness-When you sacrifice everything to put your children first.
Goodness-When you ask forgiveness from your children and teach them that even mom can make mistakes.
Gentleness-When you sing a soothing lullabye to a newborn or comfort a teenage daughter with a broken heart.
Love-When your child is bawling while getting a shot at the doctor’s office, and you cry faucets right along with them.
Peace-When you have a tiny bundle asleep in your arms, and with every inhale and exhale you are comforted.
“But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” Galatians 5: 22 (NLT)
Also, remember that God sees you and the job He has charged you with. He has created you with these abilities and once you enter motherhood these abilities become stronger with a supernatural force that transform you into a remarkable woman.
“But let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious. 1 Peter 3:4 (ESV)