making space and finding rest

I have been feeling a bit crowded lately. I don't know why or what it means...it's just that sometimes, right smack in the middle of the day, I just need to sit down and B-R-E-A-T-H-E. There has been a lot rolling around my heart about motherhood and then at the same time about my own personal life...the one that doesn't get wrapped up in what it means to "mother". I know I talk about it a lot. It seems like I am finally getting on this path that feels really comfortable...a lot more comfortable than where I have been in terms of being a mama. The path is a little bit off the beaten road...but others have traveled it I am sure, because there are some footprints that have left light marks on the grass and turf. There are those I am meeting, discovering (perhaps for the first time) and re-discovering who are walking this path along with me...holding a hand out along the way or just offering a little encouragement..."you are doing good...keep walking.". It is funny how much MORE I am discovering about what I believe and how I want to live out my life and what values I choose to guide my decisions...and just how I would like to parent these children. I didn't have most of that figured out before I had my babes. Am I the only one that didn't know exactly what kind of mama I wanted to be before actually bringing a child into this world?? Sometimes I feel like I am. I did know a significant amount of what was important to me...I did know certain things that I believe...but by no means did I have it all figured out. I still don't. I suppose that is what happens when you get married and have a baby in your early twenties. At least, it is for me. I am constantly growing, yes. But for the past few years I have felt less like I am growing and more like I am simply surviving. Not just because of my new role as a mama...there are lots of contributing factors...but I have sat in this place for a while and somehow have ignored myself...my growth...the things that are important to me. The way I feel about this life? "Wheresoever you go...go with all your heart."-Confuscious. How I feel about the past few years? Well...it has kind of felt more like I've been watching my life fold out, instead of taking place as a co-creator. Things that have been important to me have kind of sat quietly in my heart...not quite getting to manifestation in my life...but sitting there. Still there.
It has become more and more important to me to get this all situated in my heart. To start living how I want. To start taking this conscious/mindful living, this natural/simple living, this creative living, this life of engaging myself in what is good and real and bare-bone beautiful....taking it and living it. Really taking steps to live it. Not just to have it sitting within, but to have it moving into physical existence in my life. Bringing myself into greater authenticity. It feels so good to sink into that, to be brought back. I may have a ways to go, but I know that I am on the journey there...and those steps are the heart of this life. They are how I learn and live. The ultimate destination is what keeps me moving, but there is great beauty in the travel...in taking steps...one at a time.
I don't always feel like I am moving forward, but for the most part, I can see myself drifting about on wings and leaves and making my way. Today was a bit like that. We did a lot of cleaning...of de-cluttering, donating and organizing. I usually feel more comfortable when there is clutter and chaos around me, but lately I have felt the urge to bring it all into view and to get rid of what isn't serving to help me take steps. It feels good to rid this space of things that don't reflect the path that we are trotting down. It feels good to get rid of the old to make way for the new. Not new "stuff", but new ways of thinking, new ways of living, new ideas and truths being able to find space and settle into our home, becoming a part of how we view the world and our place in it. It isn't easy for me to get organized, let alone STAY organized. But, I have noticed lately that I feel crowded. I feel a bit stressed out by being surrounded by things that aren't necessarily in tune with where I am going. This has to do with so much more than just what is in our home, of course, and it really does feel good to think about it all and look more closely at what isn't supportive and nourishing and inspiring to this effort, in whatever form.
It was a nice day getting some things together...getting rid of stuff that doesn't serve us well anymore...and looking towards a future that invites more in. More of what encourages where we are headed. I find that already, my soul is finding rest in these small movements... and it is proving to be a comfortable place to lay my crowded head.

journey sacked out after a small adventure earlier this morning

*totally off topic and unrelated but incredibly funny to me...

josh just came in to ask me what I was posting about.

my reply?

"I don't know...I'm just letting my hands type."

his reply?

"oh. you should write about what a great husband you have. I mean, I know it would be a really long post, but it would be good."

Ah, yes...and I promise, he already got his massage.


thailandchani said...

LOL!! Very interesting combination of topics.

I don't know about being a mother as I did not have children but somehow I'm guessing that what we might think in theory might not always apply in practice. :)

The picture on the banner of your blog is really stunning!

Auntie Vee said...

Ah, yes...I would like to hear more about the man you married! After all, he's the one who invented Q-Tips!! It should be very absorbing!!!

rebecca said...


what a beautiful post. you touch on everything that every young mother has gone through...i, too, had to navigate my way through the field of motherhood when my daughter was young never knowing whether i was doing right or wrong but always believing that i was giving it my very best. the thing that struck me when my daughter came into the world was this: how did i ever manage to live without her all this time? she filled such a void i thought i did not have; she was a great teacher and she showed me the way -- what she needed, how she needed it, etc.

you too will find that way yourself with no problem, for your children and for yourself. life is learning and growing and your instincts will always guide you.

i love your postings jessamyn, that's why i've tagged you...please see my post for details.

oh, and hubby, god bless the hubby. what a wonderful family you have.


bella said...

It takes time to find our own sense of integration, where who we are as mothers does not lessen or diminish ourselves as women but actually makes us MORE our true selves. and it is a constant flux, learning how to nurture your own creativity and expression of spirit while doing everything that needs to be done and showing up for your family, to be present.
Giving birth is like walking a labyrinth, and when you get the center, your baby is born, you are born. And exiting the labyrinth takes time, years, and when you walk out past the threshold from which you entered, you are yourself and yet entirely different, transformed. I think of this because it brings me comfort. All I can ever do is walk one step at a time, and I cannot get lost even when I feel I am.
love to you.

Auntie Vee said...

Another thing...I've never been a mother but I know all about being a perfect parent...you just fumble your way through and hope for the best because children don't have a clue either until they are grown. Then if they come to you with a beef... you just say, "Well I did the best I knew how!"
I don't really think you have any worries because these children are greatly loved!

Now I'm wondering...should I post this?

amanda said...

Your husband is funny! I'm also married to a Josh :)
This post spoke directly to my heart. So many of the same thoughts and feelings are in me right now. Trying to live my most authentic life, and bring the things that are inside out into exsistance--and doing it all without a chance to step back from the day-to-day work that keeps us busy from morning til night (and sometimes all night--that's life with babes!)
I had no idea what kind of mother I wanted to be until I had my son, and so I'm making it up as I go along. Wouldn't it be wonderful to have a retreat with other moms on the same journey. I can imagine coming home refreshed and full of inspiration. There should be such a thing.
I am dreaming of another baby but that probably won't happen for a while. After being a mom for three years I am just now feeling like myself again. Not trying to sound negative here, but you know how it is. Anyway, I imagine being a mother of two will bring it's own need to re-evaluate it all once again.
I've rambled quite a bit here, but I just find your posts very thought-provoking.

Debbie said...

Jess, you are an inspiration to me. I love your openness and williness to share your open heart with all of us. I as well did not exactly know how I wanted to venture into this motherhood world. I don't think anyone really can know. Each step of the way, life changes and we need to change with it. I know your children know how much they are loved and all your friends and family know the same thing. I am thankful that you are finding some time to "clear out" what you need to in life. Sometimes the clutter just gets to be too much. I have really enjoyed reading your post everyday. You always bring a certain calmness to me and my life, even if it is through reading your blog. I really need that at this point! :)

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on knowing nothing. Keep trying not to figure it out. Just see how it goes, and watch the truth reveal itself.

daisies said...

i giggled over your husband ;)

i think it is a constant process, this growing up, discarding what we no longer need or want and adding on what we do, how we become, who we are and who we want to be as mothers and as persons. i had my first son in my early twentites too and had to learn how to be a mother while i was still learning how to be me :)