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Life is About the Chocolate Chips

I am fairly certain that the role of a mom/mother is likely the most underappreciated job in the world… it is certainly one of the most underpaid! We are CEO’s, CFO’s, operations managers, project managers, master chefs, chauffeurs, doctors, janitors, referees, judges, etc… all wrapped up into one!

While people know me for my hairstyles, my number one role and most important priority is my family. Ours consists of six very good and well-intentioned children. But, they are still six children! I wasn’t born with six arms, nor enough volume in my lungs to vocally make sure each one of them is on task when they need to be. Aside from the chaos at home, it is often the daily scheduling and carpools that drive me the craziest.

As mothers, we all have days in which we wonder if we can possibly make it to bedtime with one ounce of sanity left! Sibling squabbles, messy rooms, bikes in driveways, lights left on, open doors, and dinner consumption negotiations litter our days to no end!  To make matters worse, we all compare ourselves against the put-together, “Pinterest-perfect” WonderMom living down the street.

Then there are the moms who not only have to take on every role at home, but also carry a full or part-time job as well!

I began pondering the other day what I could do to help keep life from consuming me. How could I change my own perspective on my tasks each day? I came to an interesting conclusion…

Motherhood like a Chocolate Chip Cookie

Image Source: Flickr (StarsApart)

I see life a lot like I see a chocolate chip cookie… yes, a cookie! It consists of a huge mass of dough sprinkled sporadically with absolutely yummy chocolate chips.

The dough, of course, represents the boring and mundane parts of daily life: the problems, schedules, and craziness… while the chocolate chips are the absolute joyous moments that make the rest of the day all worth it!

Furthermore, I believe the yumminess factor of the dough itself is directly correlated to the amount of chocolate chips throughout. The fewer the chocolate chips, the less “calorie-worthy” the cookie becomes for me.  The more the chocolate, the better the whole cookie tastes and the more I will justify eating more than one!  In fact, my perfect cookie would have just enough dough to hold the chocolate chips together!

{Hi, my name is Mindy, and I am a Chocoholic!}

I oftentimes think our judgment on the “deliciousness” of the cookie is limited by our own perspective. Meaning, a lot of chocolate chips are present… but that we often allow the dull flavor of the dough to overrun the delicious chocolate chips!

I decided that I need to spend more time looking at the chocolaty moments of each day. But what are those moments?

They are the unsolicited “I love you”s, hugs, and kisses from our children.  The scraped together breakfasts in bed, hand-drawn cards, sloppily made crafts, and warm snuggles from sleepy children straight out of their beds.  They are the simple toothless smiles, first steps, giggles, and angelic profiles as they sleep.  They are the aced spelling tests and riding the bike for the first time. They are even the tiny handprints on the windows that you notice when the children are at school! {Yes, even handprints are chocolate chips because one day… they will be gone!}

One Saturday two years ago, after a week of Spring Break, I was not feeling well and my two youngest had the flu.  My hubby was doing his best to back me up, but it all seemed a bit much for me to endure on what should have been an enjoyable weekend.

The kids seemed to be in my hair all week, messes, begging, etc, so that Saturday morning was one of those moments when I was shouting over and over in my head… “I am severely underpaid as a mom!”  I mean, all these kids seem to do is take, take, and take to the point where I feel like I have nothing more to give!

One of my daughters {age eight at the time} received her Highlights magazine in the mail that day, and she sat down on the couch to read it.  After about 15 minutes, she grabbed an empty Kleenex box, some paper supplies, markers, and some foam stickers and ran up to her room.  In the process, another daughter {age six at the time} saw her and followed her up to the room and together they locked the door.

The girls were up there for a good solid hour or so, giggling and laughing which is normally a good indicator that they are up to absolutely no good and making a huge mess!

When they were finished, they opened their bedroom door and ran down the stairs to the family room where I was feeding the baby.

They ran in front of me and began asking the dreaded “Mom…  mom… mom???”  I asked them impatiently, “What do you want now?”  Before they could answer I was already formulating their torturous chore options in my head!  I hesitated for a brief moment before laying into them, when the older daughter said with a cheerful smile on her face, “We have a surprise for you!”

Just then, they pulled this wonderful handmade gift from behind them and presented it to me, both of them smiling and as proud as could be! They had even opened a full pack of pencils and sharpened them just so that I knew that it was supposed to be a pencil holder!

It was such a tender moment, a chocolaty moment, and something that I mentally recorded.  It made my eyes well up with tears as I read the scribbled text… “World’s Best Mom“.

Kleenex Box Pencil Holder | Mom and Motherhood

One of the best gifts I have ever received from my children!

I was so proud of this little gift, and my heart swelled at its tiny imperfections and scribbled lettering. The fact that I do not ever use pencils, or that it didn’t match any of my home décor didn’t matter to me one bit! I placed it in our kitchen where I could see it every day! Forget the certificates, medals and accolades of other professions; this is one of the best awards I could ever have received!

This little “chocolate chip” moment, so to speak, made that whole down-and-doughy week well worth it! In fact, I still often think of that cute pencil holder.

It is not easy, but every time I take a step back and look at my life…I mean REALLY look at my life, I notice how often these joyous moments do occur, without fail.  As a mother, I feel a responsibility to notice, cherish and remember them as often as I can.

I love each of my children tremendously, and I absolutely LOVE being their mommy!  When I am old and wrinkled, and life seems as if it has quickly passed me by, I know that these chocolate chip moments will be what I’ll remember and hold onto.  They are these sweet memories and loving relationships that I will take with me when I leave this life.

I quietly make a commitment to myself today to try to remember more chocolate chip moments and less of the other “stuff”. I vow to be kind and gentle towards my children, husband, and especially myself, and… I vow to eat many, many more cookies with lots of chocolate chips!

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