This morning, I opened the fridge and pulled out some spinach, an avocado, a lime and a banana to make my favorite green smoothie.
It is the prettiest of greens and although it might not sound good to you, it really does taste great. Trust me.
I love to pour it into the boy child's Avenger tumbler and head off to work with it in hand. It is like my very own Incredible Hulk smoothie and I like to think I look cooler carrying this young, hip cup into the office.
But more than the perceived hip factor, I also love what this green drink does for me.
It provides nourishment.
This is good for me. This greenness in a superhero cup feeds me well. It gives my body energy... good, whole foods energy. There is nothing fake. Nothing processed. Nothing phony baloney in it. Just a serving of fruit and a serving of vegetables that I can enjoy before 9:00 a.m.
In a superhero cup no less.
And this is what I want 2014 to be about. This is the verb.
Nourish. To provide with food or other substances necessary for life and growth.
As Mommas, we work hard everyday to make sure we are providing our families with the "food and other substances necessary for life and growth." We stock the fridge and pantry with good foods. We make sure people are fed and clothed and as clean as humanly possible in kidland. We take note that the jackets are zipped up and the shoe strings are tied before they head out the door. We've read with them and checked their homework. We've tucked them in and sang the 17 required songs and supplied the hugs and kisses needed for sweet dreams. We plan for their events and schedule the games and practices into our lives. We encourage their BIG dreams and applaud their triumphs and confidence. We cuddle them through disappointments that teach life lessons along the way. We say prayers at night for their health and safety.
We remind. We teach. We fuss. We laugh. We cry. We play. We feed. We zip and tie. We love.
All in the name of providing them with the nourishment that they need to grow and live life well.
And we get up the next day and do it all over again.
In 2014, I want us Mommas to remember that we also need to make sure we are just as focused on nourishing ourselves as much as we think about how we provide nourishment to our families.
Sometimes I think that it is selfish of me to still have BIG dreams. To still want to do "other" things with my life. Sometimes I think, I had my chance. I should have done it then. I should have traveled there before. I should have pursued this goal a long time ago. Sometimes I think that my time has passed. That this should be their time. That my focus should be on them now.
But I always think of a few years ago, when the girl child was just a year old and I had a chance to go to New York City on a business trip. Travel is a rarity in my work world and I was bold enough to take the opportunity to go and be a part of this conference. While I was there, I started feeling those twangs of Mommy Guilt. Oh, my poor baby, at home with her very capable, very caring father. What have I done? Why did I think I could come to the Big Apple and be among esteemed colleagues and learn more about my profession? Why did I think I could take this time to explore and write and challenge myself among other adults? Why did I think I could travel and sleep, uninterrupted, in a soft bed with clean sheets and a venture down to a continental breakfast prepared for me? (And on and on and... on...)
Until my friend traveling with me stopped me from my own self-imposed downward spiral of guilt and regret by saying this:
"By being away on this trip, you are teaching her a powerful lesson. You are showing her that she can do it all. She can have a family when she grows up. She can have a career. She can always continue to learn, no matter her age. What a gift to show her the power that comes from pursuing a dream."
We can still be the Mommas. We can provide and love and care and comfort. And we can also learn and grow and dream and try.
And we should. We should make sure that our bodies, minds and souls are nourished. Everyday.
Eat the food. Get the rest. Write in the journal. Read the books. Listen to the music. Take the class. Be with friends. Be still sometimes. (Even if just for a few minutes at a time.)
And go after those BIG dreams, whatever they are, whenever they appear, while you encourage your kiddos to pursue their own.
That is how a good teacher teachers. By modeling. By showing. By engaging each day with action words.
We should practice what we preach. We should walk our talk. We should take care of ourselves, too.
Eat well. Play more. Choose happy.
Dream Bigger. Make it happen.
Create the time to really nourish your body, mind and soul in 2014.
(And drink a few green smoothies, too. They are good for you. Trust me.)
Let's all, Go. Do that.