Thursday, June 23, 2011

Behind Every Mom is a Real Person....

.....a person with talents, hopes, dreams, opinions, interests, ideas and desires that reveal the individual she is beyond the title she has willingly and wholeheartedly accepted, embraced and is known most by:.... ♥ MOM ♥.

While purging my home of items and clutter that gathers throughout the years, from behind the headboard in my bedroom I pulled out some college project boards that instantly threw me back to another time, another place, and a slightly different ~ and yet, in some ways still the same ~ person.  The person I was when newly married and before my name was changed to ♥ Mom ♥. 

I was in college for Interior Design after several years of floating around, unsure of what I wanted to do with myself.  I first had the inclination towards a Design degree in high school, but was discouraged by a cocky, chauvinistic Chemistry teacher who told me it  wasn't the best choice for me.....perhaps a decorator would be better.  He had me pegged as less intelligent than I was ....and having a less-than-healthy-self-image, I listened to him.  After studying in Elementary Education for a while, I took some time off and returned a couple of years later to pursue that Interior Design degree through the encouragement of a good friend.  Surprisingly enough, I excelled in not only the "decorating part", but also the too-difficult-for-me design aspect of the courses as well as the presentations (another source of discouragement from others because shy, quiet people don't do well at that).

Whatever. ; ) 

When I pulled the evidence of that part of my life out from hiding, I hastily took some pictures of the boards, planning to throw them out as they are no longer in the best condition, but wanting to preserve the memories still.  You can tell how hastily I took them....I'm sure you're quite impressed with the wrinkled sheet background {I had my comforter in the washing machine ; ) }.

Project:  "The Jungle Room" - I had to design a restaurant =)

 The floorplan & seating plan, created to meet all commercial codes/requirements:

Interior Wall Elevation:

Lighting plan:

Fabrics & Finishes:

Project ~ A Bedroom:
They've been moved quite a few times over the year, and haven't necessarily fared well

Project ~  A Fancy Bathroom ; )

Project ~  A Dining Room:
This one was in such bad shape, I only salvaged a very wrinkled elevation....

Project ~ A Kitchen
Again, all I could salvage was one elevation...

After taking the photos, I hauled them downstairs and told my kids to come see them before I threw them out.  As I explained what they were and all that went into each project, they rewarded me with exclamations of, "You drew that?!",  "You did all that?!", "That must have been really hard",  "You can do everything",  "You are so smart", "You can draw really well!" and "You can't throw these away"!!  =)  They are my most enthusiastic encouragers. ♥  They may have earned a batch of cookies. ; )

Just as looking at these old projects took me back to that time in my history, they also caused me to think about all the things I dreamed of being as I grew up ~ in order, as I can remember them.....
  • A princess =)
  • A bride
  • Florence Nightingale
  • Wonder Woman {I can still hear the theme song ; ) }
  • an artist
  • a singer
  • a writer
  • NOT a bride {an independent teen ;) }
  • a teacher
  • an Interior Designer
  • an artist
  • a writer
  • a teacher
  • an Interior Designer
  • a Caterer
I got married somewhere in between the last three, and then I became a ♥Mom♥.  I wasn't prepared for how the Lord would change me through that one additional description to all that is ME.  There was a time when I was sure I didn't even want children.  I was convinced I wouldn't be a good mom...... wouldn't, couldn't be good at it.  Family issues may have had something to do with that, plus I had other things I wanted to do.  I was going to have a career in commercial interior design, financial security, and success. And then, along came Ashlyn.....who will be 13 next month!

Ahhh, how the Lord has used her and her brothers, who came along not far behind, to grow me in a way I can't imagine having grown otherwise.  How He has used them to show me all I can be IN HIM.  How He has taken the dreams that I once had and, once surrendered to Him and His direction for my life, how He has molded them into something entirely different, entirely fulfilling, and taken me to a place that is entirely at peace with who I am.

The world tends to look at Moms who give themselves so fully to their calling as lives and potentials wasted, talents squandered.  I know this to be true as I've heard it and felt it along the way. 

I beg to disagree. =)  Moms who give themselves fully to their families do not cease to be who they once were.  How shallow and one dimensional someone's thought processes must be to come to that conclusion.  They don't cease to be who they once were, but become that and so much more.....if you take the time to look.  It's always worthwhile to do so. ; )

As I look at that list above and the dreams I once had, I see that God has not taken those dreams and desires away from me.  I am many of those things in all the hats I wear.  I am also Wife.  Mother.  Community and Church Volunteer. 

Homechooler.  I've felt called to it since my children's earliest years.  Did I dream of it long ago?  No.  Was I open to the dreams He had for me?  Yes.  Did I (and do I now) feel worthy, capable, smart enough, patient enough? No. But called.....yes. =) I don't know how those who don't feel called to it do it! I was once talking to a friend about it, and other issues in my life......about not feeling like I could meet the challenges the Lord has set before me. She said something similar to this.....paraphrased by my and the years that have passed since she said it, "God doesn't call the most qualified ~ He calls those with willing hearts." With a willing heart and that key ingredient ~LOVE~ He will more than make up the differences that we imagine are there!

How rich and rewarding, how full and meaningful He has made what I have given to Him.  I surrendered my dreams ~ and He has made something more beautiful of my life that I ever could have alone.



Ann said...

Enjoyed ready your journey as a student and finally Mom. I love your drawings, I would probably hang them in my craft room. They are a piece of that WHOLE person that you are now.
Happy Thursday

Aurie said...

Those are so cool! I always wanted to draw and design - but I never really had that artistic talent. For sure :)

I love being a mom - and believe me, I never planned on being one.

Larri @ Seams Inspired said...

Thanks for sharing your heart today in this excellent post. You are so talented! Loved looking at all your design boards. And loved your list of what you wanted to be. ☺ Happy Thursday!

Jill said...

Thank you! I ended up keeping the drawings, but I have no wall space to hang them - I would love to hang them in a craft room as Ann suggested, but my "craft room" right now is a multi-purpose room....maybe one day. A girl can dream, can't she? ;)

Tonya @ Live the Adventure said...

What a beautiful post! I could really relate to your words in so many ways.