We're wishing all the different kinds of Mamas out there a very Happy Mother's Day. Motherhood is messy...and challenging....and crazy....and sleepless...and giving... and unbelievably beautiful. Julie, our Marketing Mind, thoughtfully shares her experiences and reflections about her adventure with motherhood.
When mama salmon are ready to spawn, they abandon their free swimming life in the open ocean to battle the current of a raging river. They’ll travel hundreds of perilous miles, get pummeled by rocks, leap over dams, and rarely stop to eat along the way. But just before dying from exhaustion, the salmon drop their precious eggs in a safe cradle of rocks.
Mama salmon, I hear you.
I can’t help but identify with the female salmon, putting every last scrap of their being into safeguarding the next generation. There are days where I feel as if my entire existence has been commandeered by my children. As if life has morphed into one unending cycle of snacks, laundry and bedtime battles. When my former, freewheeling climber-girl 20-something self appears on my photo feed it’s like seeing a better rested, perkier breasted ghost reminding me of what I left behind.
Most days are crammed so full of kid life and work needs, that the closest I come to self care is brushing my teeth at a leisurely pace before passing out in bed at night. But, through all of it I love being a mom. The joy my kids find in the everyday world is a joy I get to share too. And, for that I am endlessly grateful.
I was enormously pregnant with my second kid when my daughter took her first wobbly pedal strokes on a two wheeler. Letting go of her tiny saddle, and jogging beside her with the grace of an orca out of water, is a memory I will cherish forever. I watched her grow as a person, her confidence soaring as she steered her 12-inch wheels down our block. These are the peaks I bag now, the summits of parenting from which I get to gaze out on and feel satisfied and accomplished. It’s a different kind of terrain than what I’m used to, with different ups and downs that challenge me in new, sometimes heinous and unexpected ways (hello car-ride temper tantrums).
My old self isn’t gone, either, she’s simply evolving in a new life pattern. I still get to feel a sense of my own wildness when I sneak out for an early morning ride, or find time to meet a girlfriend for an afternoon of climbing. No, it’s not the dirt bagging week-long adventures, or all-day suffer fests that I reveled in as a younger self. And, sure I miss those days. They were rad, but being a mom sustains me in its own rowdy way. And, if I play it right, and get really lucky, I might just get to share some epic days in the mountains with the little ones who I’ve sacrificed so many hours of sleep to raise.