.Scootin' away to a friend's house and then coming back home again. Those out of my sight trips teach us both so much.
I remember when I was a new mother. I was all about breastfeeding, attachment parenting, and completely immersed in mommydom. Our little world was small, population 2, with a third that came and went as his career allowed.
Bit by bit, we left that town, and joined the masses. It didn't happen in leaps and bounds, and I wasn't dragged kicking and screaming, hoping to remain.
Growing up and becoming independent is an unstoppable evolution. Sometimes, when I speak with mothers who fight it, I wonder why, but more importantly, how do they do it?
Since birth, Young One has made the unstoppable journey to independence and I've reveled in it. That's not to say I don't get a little teary and long for the days that his little hand sought out mine! Those days are over and with their passing comes new tender moments. He needs me differently, and sometimes in better ways. Less physical, more spiritual.
Attachment parenting became a trendy term a long time ago. Honestly, those that subscribe to it really don't need to name it. Attachment parenting simply means to be in tune and connected with your kid. I don't know many moms who aren't, so to attach (pun intended) the term really seems silly to me.
Call it my own Mommy evolution. I needed those terms when Young One was younger to feel validated. I needed to name my parenting style. It didn't last long for me. I wasn't a vigilante breastfeeder. Young One weaned himself. I didn't get caught up in the mommy wars of I'm better than you are because I _____________. (Fill in the blank with: feed all organic food, weave my own diapers from hemp and recycled newspapers or what have you.) But, I had the need back then to focus completely in. At the time, I couldn't see out of the box I had put myself in.
Now, looking back, I find a lot of it funny. I'm seeing that part of me again in younger mothers. It must be a necessary part of the journey. What I've gained from it is to look to more experienced mothers when I'm struggling with whatever phase we're in. I wish I would have done more of that when I was a younger mom.
Like I said, I couldn't see outside my little world and now, when I see that in others, it gets to me. I want to shake them and say, this time in their lives is so fleeting. Look outside your world and look to the future. Your birth experience, your breastfeeding, they're just blips on the radar of motherhood. They don't define you as much as you think they do and they certainly don't define you for as long as you think they will.
When your children reach out for independence, as they are genetically driven to do, you've got to step back from your own agendas and let them fly. Your attachment in the early years will serve them well if you did your job right. They'll return again and again, just in a very different way.
We humans seem to have the need to label things. Wrap them up in tight little boxes tagged with a judgment. We do it to ourselves, we do it to each other. I can't solve it, I know, but I can cut the string those neat little boxes are wrapped up with. I can look closer at my own label, the one I put on myself and the ones others put on me. And I can create a new one.
This self reflection is getting a little too deep and it's taken up the time I should have could have would have made dinner. Thank God for the forethought to stick something in the crock pot. Tonight's it's pork roast, with crumbled freshly dried herbs and lemon peel. Yum.
Lemon Peel Pork Roast
3-5 lb pork loin roast, boneless or bone-in
1 head of garlic
1 whole lemon
your favorite herbs: I used freshly dried herbs from my CSA, rosemary and thyme, about 1 tsp each
1 tsp salt
freshly ground black pepper to taste
Cut slits into pork roast and insert peeled garlic cloves, as many as you like or your family can stand! Zest your lemon into a small bowl. Crumble dried herbs into the bowl and mix all with salt and pepper. Rub or sprinkle onto pork roast. Cook on low 8-10 hours or until someone in your family says, "I'm starving, when do we eat?" Roast is done when it's internal temp is 165 degrees. If it's cooked all day, it will fall apart, so don't serve this if you want an impressive roast to carve at the table.