Some questions

I found this meme/questionnaire on Somemother through Meagan Francis’ wonderful blog The Happiest Mom (I highly recommend it and read it religiously).  I just liked it and hope you will join in and participate – just link in the comments!!

ESTABLISHING YOURSELF (a few details that help somemothers know what they have in common with you).

I am 37 years old.

I am married.

I have an 8 year old daughter and a 6 year old son.

I work part time outside of the home.

I am upper-middle class.

I live urban.

I own my house

I completed high school, college, and graduate school.

I am straight.

Of note about my ethnicity and/or cultural background: I am Caucasian

NOW, TWENTY QUESTIONS ABOUT YOU

1. The most significant aspect of my upbringing: I moved around a lot: born in Cambridge, to Paris at age 3, back to Cambridge at 7, to London at 12, back to the US to boarding school at 16.

2. My best advice to mothers about to enter the stage of child rearing that I just went through: Forgive yourself if you don’t love every minute.  But try to pay attention to it all regardless.

3. Something that concerns me about my child(ren): My daughter: her relentless desire (need?) to please others.  My son: his absolute disregard for authority.

4. My absolute worst mothering moment:
Hard to say.  Watching my daughter fall out of a shopping cart onto her head at the age of 18 months.  Hearing my daughter tell me at age 8.5 that she was hurt I was spending so much time with my own mother, who was badly injured (hello, middle place!).

5. What annoys me most about other mothers: The unwillingness to admit that they haven’t figured it out, that their kids aren’t perfect, that they often doubt themselves, their choices, everything.

6. I am happiest: By the ocean, when my children look at me with untrammeled joy in their eyes, when I read a line of poetry or prose that sinks deep into me, with those few people I hold dearest.

7. I am saddest: When I feel alone in the world, misunderstood or un-known, like I’m failing at everything I do.

8. My biggest fear: Being abandoned by those I love most.  Not being safe.

9. I am ashamed of: Of being too sensitive, too emotional, just plain too much.

10. Something I need to forgive: Myself.  For all the ways I’ve let myself and others down.

11. Something I wish I could say to someone: To Mr Valhouli: thank you.  For making me realize I had something to say and something to offer.  For showing me the brilliance of the life of the mind.

12. Something I have never told anyone: Sure not going to start here!

13. Something I am trying to change about myself: Trying to accept the essential wound that underlies my daily sense of wonder at the world.

14. My biggest accomplishment: That my children seem – so far! – happy, well-adjusted, curious about the world, and to still want me around.

15. I wish: There was peace on earth, and enough prosperity that nobody was homeless.  The homeless people begging in Harvard Square make me cry every single day.

16. Something my relationship with my mother has taught me about parenting: That it’s valuable to have a life outside of your children – not only for yourself, but for them.

17. Something my relationship with my father has taught me about parenting How powerful a true passion can be.  His, for European history and culture, propelled our family across the ocean not only once but twice.

18. How I would describe my faith life. Continuing to evolve, increasingly important to me.  I was brought up Episcopalian, though casually.  I was confirmed in the Church of England.  I never knew faith mattered to me until the last few years.  Now I know it does immensely.

19. Something I hope will be different for me by this time next year: I hope I will be closer to my dream of being a writer.

20. Something important about my story that hasn’t been captured by the questions above ???

BONUS: A question you would like to see added to this list that readers can respond to in the comments What is your favorite book, and why?


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7 Comments

  1. Posted October 5, 2011 at 6:41 am | Permalink

    I love this! My 18 yo would never speak to me again if I answered, but maybe once she goes to college next year!

    #9 and #19 – they seem to hold your greatest gifts that, perhaps, we can see better than you. That sensitivity, that too muchness? They are the diamond within you, LIndsey. They really are.

    And you are a writer. One of my very favorite writers, actually.

    My favorite book? That is a tough question. So many books have saved me, inspired and delighted me.

    Maybe Traveling Mercies by Anne Lamott. It changed my life. Or Little Women. Or anything by Pema Chodron. I’ll stop there.

    Thank for this…

    XOOX

  2. Posted October 5, 2011 at 7:37 am | Permalink

    #12 made me laugh out loud! What a fun exercise. And I agree with you about the bonus question–that’s a must-know!

  3. Posted October 5, 2011 at 9:10 am | Permalink

    I love this. And positively adore (and agree with) the advice you give to parents. As one such parent, it is much appreciated. Thanks!

  4. Posted October 5, 2011 at 10:10 am | Permalink

    “Forgive yourself if you don’t love every minute. But try to pay attention to it all regardless.” Love this. This is treasured advice.

    Can I just say that one of the things I love the most about you is that you are TOO MUCH. Maybe this is because I equally feel shame about my too muchness. When I see it in you I find it so lovely. You are helping me to love myself because I see why some people find that quality in me passionate and lively. This is how I experience you.

  5. Connie
    Posted October 5, 2011 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

    Those before me have already commented on this, but “being too sensitive, too emotional, just plain too much” is precisely why I love you SO much!! I admire, respect, envy it more than any other quality!! It’s a remarkable way to live.

    As for my favorite book — A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving. I know you’ve never been able to get into that book, but — unlike any other book I’ve ever read — it opened my eyes (years before I was able to appreciate the implications for me) to the fact that everything in life has a purpose or a reason. That there is likely is some order to this chaos. I suppose you might say that it taught me that there are designs so vast… 😉 xoxo

  6. Mary
    Posted October 5, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

    You are already a writer. Everything You write illuminates with beauty. I can see the pure goodness in you. You are truly blessed and very generous of heart to share yourself with strangers. You’re inspiring.
    Mary : )

    Mary Reply:

    uuuhhh… whats with the weird scary face near my name…????Help!

  7. Posted October 6, 2011 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

    LOVE THIS!! I going to have to use this on my blog! As to question #19…. You ARE a writer! I love reading the words you write on this blog. Oh and I can’t wait to buy your first book 🙂