Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Oh my, the longest post in history, beware.

So I started this post BEFORE Luke refused to play at his first baseball practice. Before I tried to talk him into walking on the field for 1 1/2 hours. Before I tried to bribe him with In and Out, a toy from Target and pretty much anything his heart could imagine for the sanity of his mother. Before Baylie scratched this little girl on the face so bad while I was in my negotiations with Luke.

AFTER I had dropped off Darby to my sisters to free me of one child so that I could attend first baseball practice with Coach Joe that lasted two hours. After I paid $200 for him to play. After he was too scared to try out, but then cried the rest of the day regretting it, which led a major discussion between his parents whose dad didn't think he should get another chance, but mom fought for him, and resulting in finding out that he could still play without trying out. Mental note: If he is too nervous to try out, he is going to be too nervous to set one foot on that field. The field where we watched similiar aged boys with similiar baseball skills, some of them who Luke would be better than and older than. Before we ran into a guy in our ward there who also tried to give Luke a pep talk, whose daughter Baylie scratched the begeezies out of.

Are you following me here at all? The original post I was writing was BEFORE I had a minor meltdown and was frustrated and angry with my oldest child (because this reminded me of flashbacks of swimming lesson and sports classes he was also too nervous to do but we had also already paid for). But finally I decided I love my boy more. I know this, but sometimes you forget. Because I know how great he would be and how much he wanted to do it all day but then chickened out at the last second. Seriously he would be so good. But finally we ended it okay. With lots of hugs and kisses.

Jason is at a late meeting tonite, Darby is gone, but we still love each other. Me and my son. Because he was plenty frustrated with me too wondering why I kept trying to coax him out there. And why I was being so mean and not let him go home. And why I wouldn't just play catch with him outside the field, which I did until Baylie mauled poor Lacie.

But we have a deal. We are going to try one more time. Even though that makes me a liar because I vowed on the ride home that I would never take him back there again. Ever. But McCoys aren't quiters. Stupid, yes, but not quiters. And we will try another time to squash that scaredy cat that is stuck in his belly. Because next week he is still going to be scared. One more try and then baseball is finished. Until he is 20...or maybe 10. If he quits then he gets to 'work off' the money we spent on baseball doing jobs in the house. Which will be a long time. So I hope he goes through with it. Next time he has five seconds and not an hour and a half to decide.

One day I will get this right. One day I will remember not to push him. Like I told his potential piano teacher who he was too nervous to meet with that the boy should have 'Don't Push Me' stamped on his forward. One day I will remember that. Even though my mom pushed me and I hated it but turned out okay. So anyway, the rest of this post was written before all of this. Before I had to pray in my room not to be so mad, and just remember he is still five and wonderful just the way he is.

Breathe.... Okay. So here it goes.

I have ten minutes before I have to pick up Luke. Baylie is still sleeping. The laundry is running, a treat is in the oven, but I can't get Sunday off my mind. Maybe it was the drive home from Lindsey's where Darby is spending the night for the first time.

Sunday night I was able to attend, with a car's full of women in my ward (local church), a fireside by Julie Beck, the current general Relief Society President (think over 5 million women members).

I already liked her. She is a no-nonsense gal. And actually one of the reasons I dislike the Feminist Mormons Housewife site not to mention another very popular one...because they bashed her. That is forbidden ground to me. Because the first time she spoke as R.S. president, she shook up the place. She does not mess around. And some people bashed her for it. It supplied my running buddy conversations for weeks. To read her first talk click HERE

So of course I want to hear this lady in person. Because I always feel like she is telling me to shape up...and makes me want to do it, which is strange enough. Also because she has the highest position for a women in the church, not counting wives of prophets or apostles which could technically be considered callings if you think about it.

Crap, only 6 minutes left. So of course you want to know what she said right?

Well, she told us that you cannot delegate your mothering. And that nobody can do what we do. Husbands and family can and should help, but mothering is our job. And that the 'swing shift' is more important than we to prepare your day accordingly. And don't skimp out on teaching moments by putting on a video to entertain, chaffeuring your kids around to more events, and ordering fast food to be faster. Because we should be teaching. Ouch, that one hurt. And not be too tired in the 'day shift' that you are crap for the swing shift. So she didn't say crap, but I'm the one paraphrasing here. Because the swing shift is when everyone's tired and everyone's hungry and you need to be on your best game. Wow...that is major. Because we all know what that feels like. And we all have lots to improve on. Like lots.

She also said if we are going to have missionaries in ten years, its because there mothers taught them in the swing shift. See why I like this lady? She does not mince words. All this is my interpretation of what she said, not from her transcript. She also said plenty of things that I didn't mention, with plenty not relating to families and motherhood, but since that is what I'm knee deep in, thats what I remember. Sue me.

And she talked about Adam and Eve. Particularly some scriptures in Moses 5 (call your local mormon if you need a copy of the Pearl of Great Price.). About how Adam said in verse 10. "And in that day Adam blessed God and was filled, and began to prophesy concerning all the families of the earth, saying: Blessed be the name of God, for because of my transgression my eyes are opened, and in this life I shall have joy, and again in the flesh I shall see God. "

(now the rest I finished up later today After the baseball meltdown and after the kids are asleep)

And in verse 11, Eve says, "And Eve, his wife, heard all these things and was glad, saying: Were it not for our transgression we never should have had seed, and never should have known good and evil, and the joy of our redemption, and the eternal life which God giveth unto all the obedient."

Sister Beck said that we need to stop worrying about the dream, because all we were promised on earth was an experience, and we were sure getting an experience. This was in response to a woman who has asked the question, "What else can we do when our teenagers are not making good choices." Which question I didn't think applied to me, until to brought up all that experience stuff. And Sister Beck read these scriptures. And asked if all of Adam and Eve's children turned out perfectly? No. But Eve was glad for the experience. Ouch. Am I always glad for the experience? Better get to work.

She asked all these groups to stand up at different times, like "Single women" or "Women with small babies" Or "Widows" or "Married women who want kids" And after each group stood up, she said, I bet I know what you wish for. Like "A Husband" Or "Five minutes to yourself" or "A reunion with your spouse." or "Children" And it was just so touching to watch all these people. And as my wise friend pointed out today, made us show how grateful we should be, because we all have something the other person wants. And how we just need to be glad for the experience that we were promised in mortality.

It was deep.

Other facts about her is that her parents have 65 grandchildren and 55 great grandchildren. Now is that a Mormon family or what? And how her mother was an older single sister and married her father who was a widowed bishop of three small children. And how they ended up with ten kids in the family And how she has close to 80 cousins. And her mom is now 85 and her dad 90. And how she met one of her counselors as a Beehive (12 year old) during church basketball where she was told to 'Get in there and foul anyone you can." Which is something my mother would appreciate.

Another question that was asked was how do you help and comfort your extended family in hard times if you live by them or not while still worrying about your immediate family?

For this one she said when we get married (same Adam and Eve example)
1. We leave
2. Cleave to one another
3. Be as one.

Thankfully Jason and I did this out of neccessity since we've always lived thousands of miles from our families. But Sister Beck pointed out that she knows of married couples who live around the world, but still have never left 'home'.

But the biggest thing I got out of this answer was when she said, "We cannot serve in all the places our hearts yearn to be." Don't we all know that feeling? Just these last couple of weeks while my dear friend's baby is having difficulty and I feel so helpless in how to help her. Or my brother who is medical school and I wish I could bring him dinner and check in on him more. Or see Jason's sister who we haven't seen in two years because she just got back from her mission in England.

Sister Beck gave examples of neighbors who've lost spouses that she wished she could help more and her aging parents she wished she could help more. But someone was helping them. Just not her. Or as much as she would like to. Even a daughter who had had a baby early while she was scheduled to speak and three conferences. She talked about how she ached to be there, but a young sister in law ended up going there and helping out. But she said sometimes you have to rely on the Lord to help them when you can't be there. And to pray. The Lord will step in to take care of things that you cannot.

She also talked about deciding culture of your family. What will your support and stand behind in your family. Like college or music or grades or honesty. Jason and I have always been on the same page with stuff like that. I'm lucky.

So that is about all I remember for now. Lots to think about. And keep thinking about the rest of the week, as I try to not be crap during the swing shift. Glad this day is over. Glad Jason is finally home. Waiting for my visiting teacher to come over right now. And bring me some invitations she made for the next baby shower. Good night.

This Morning Update (just to have like five additions to the orginal post). My visiting teacher came over, she was great and made me laugh. Don't you love people who are obligated to visit and try to like you? And the invitations were dang cute.


LOOK WHO'S MARRIED!!!!! said...

That was a great post. Thanks. This weekend, we have our Relief Society Conference...and I'm planning on attending all those classes good for newlyweds. For some reason, I think I'll be ok at the whole parenting thing (but doesn't everyone say that?). I hope all my experience working with children at the gym will help out. I just need help on the whole husband thing!!!

sara said...

I really enjoyed the fireside on Sunday. I was impressed with her responses to really lame questions. I liked how she said to take your teenagers to the temple once a month to do baptisms as a family. I've never heard that advice before and I think it can be really powerful.

Good luck with your oldest getting over his nerves.

Crazy Lady said...

i thought that was awesome too. and not rely on the 'church' to organize it for you, but do it yourself.

i didn't see you! we had soft chairs on the five row for encino people!

Amberli said...

holy crapoly! what a day and what a post! that's so sweet that you got to go see sister beck. she's awesome. there is a quote from her in this month's VT message, similar to what you said, that this is our duty and we can not pass it off to someone else. thanks for sharing all that she talked about. sounds like it was a very powerful talk. and i think you're too hard on yourself! i think your such a great mom! for real!

Tanya said...

I know Kevin is going to be like Luke, I loved your sum up of the fireside. I even read the whole post, even though when you said at the beginning it was a long one i thought to myself i won't read it all... I think you are doing an awesome job at being a great mom!!!

beth said...

Brooke - Thanks for your notes on the Fireside. I think Sis Beck is cool, too! I know a friend of mine on TALES criticized her first talk and I thought that was a little rough, too. She definitely issues a call to service - hey, just like Obama :) And she doesn't mince words and yes, sometimes it is hard for me as a mom to hear the hard truth of this HUGE responsibility I have. But I think she also just wants us to love our family and laugh with our kids... all the good stuff. I am totally intimidated to raise a future missionary. I am such a baby in the gospel myself. Maybe I can put the pressure on Adam for help with that one. ???

And I have to say about the Luke stuff. I am not him, but I look back at being young and I quit A LOT of stuff and totally regret it. It's a hard balance... when do we push our kids and teach them that a new experience is gonna be okay, and when do we know it is not worth it. I will call you one day when Tyler won't go on the field, too. Good luck with that. You are a great mom. I've gotten a lot of good advice from you. :)

Lane and Hannah said...

Liam is always wimp of the world too. He is a huge lover of all trucks, but if we come within 25 of a truck (while not in the car) he comes totally unglued no matter how many times he swore that he wanted to go see it. Or the time I took him to the fire station after he had begged to go sooner only to have him scream the whole time. Aren't children just grand?

Kira =] said...

Thank you for sharing what our R.S. president said. I needed to hear that. =]

Sarah said...

Thank you for putting your notes up of the fireside. I've been getting notes from a few different people to try and hear what Sis. Beck said. I was totally planning on going and a family obligation kept me from it at the last minute. I was pretty upset and still am, but at least I have friends who take good notes!!!

Nancy said...

I pushed you into doing what?

Nash said...

i loved the way you put her comments.
sounds like a great fireside.
thank you for sharing.

embot said...

Sis. Beck is my new hero. She was very inspiring.

Ellen said...

Hi Brooke! I found you on Krystin's blog and I LOVE your posts. Just wanted to let you know I'm "stalking" your blog and loving it!!-Ellen

christy said...

200 for baseball? that's nuts, more like 40 and that includes the uniform. i've decided that i would give my kids the opportunity but if they don't like it i don't force it. my kids have never been to shy to go out and play but i've always had them on a team with a sibling or friend. turns out they don't love sports so much yet and lidia got bored with dancing but they like tumbling so that's what they're doing.
i like the thoughts from the conf. i like people who tell it like it is too. i definitely need to improve my swing shift which means i need to prepare for it before they get home from school.