Bundles of joy?

snoopy joyIn thinking about the concept of joy for this week’s prompt I was mentally bombarded by the expression ‘bundle of joy’. For a parent, I think you just automatically begin associating the strong emotions you feel with your children. And joy is a strong emotion – it is bigger than happiness, more powerful than contentment. It is sheer, unadulterated rapture.

When you hear someone described as having a ‘joie de vivre’ – it automatically makes you gravitate towards that person, ready to be swept along by their enthusiasm for just being in the world and yet, at it’s heart, for me, joy is in single moments – yes, of course that first time your baby smiles at you, but also, an unexpectedly beautiful sunset, the day your solicitor tells you you’ve finally exchanged on a longed for home, taking your first tentative step on a new adventure with all it’s promise – be that travel, a business venture or parenthood.

On another note, pride and joy go hand in hand right? I’m certain my children will bring me moments of great pride over the years – they do already! – and also joy, but I don’t want to be that parent that loses themself so completely in their children that there’s nothing left of who they are or who they were before. I don’t want to rely on my children to be my one true source of joy. Does that make me a bad mum? Selfish?  I want to travel again – I want to see wonders of the world which will take my breathe away. I want to achieve personal goals that will add another layer to my story, my history.

I also want to guide my own personal bundles of joy towards their own experience of the rapture – which will get harder and harder as the years pass. Right now joy, for them, is in a fairground ride, an ice-cream from the van man or a particularly hilarious tickle fight. I guess the downside for them is that misery is in having a favourite toy nicked by their brother or being fed peas. Swings and roundabouts eh?

 

mumturnedmom

15 thoughts on “Bundles of joy?

  1. Great post Sam. I’m the same in feeling that I don’t want my kids to be my sole source of joy. I think it’s a risky game that could end badly in later years. Even when hubby and I have time together sans children (not that we have done for a long while) we try not to talk about them. It’s fun to reminisce about the things we did before they came along xx #ThePrompt
    mummytries recently posted…Who is She?My Profile

    • Glad to know I’m not alone in feeling like this! Some people seem to get so wrapped up in the parenting thing but I really believe you have to hold on to some vestige of your former self!! Xx

  2. I agree with you too. In a way that’s what my post is about today on the subject of joy, just in a round about fashion! I love my two more than anything in the world and watching them makes my heart sing with joy. But, I want my own new experiences too-I want to learn and discover who I am. Partly for me, partly so I can be the best mum for them as they grow.
    Iona@Redpeffer recently posted…My Ode to JoyMy Profile

    • It’s weird but it feels a bit like there is this divide whereby the people you know who don’t (and won’t) have children expect you to stay completely as you were and lament the bit of you that got lost in parenthood, but the parents you know (and this is probably just my own projection) think maybe you are missing the point of having children if you spend time thinking about yourself and projects that don’t involve them. Hard one to balance..

  3. I don’t think it’s at all selfish to want/need joy from something other than your kids! In fact I’m a better parent for not devoting everything to my three because i’m happier that way, and a happier parent is a better parent I think! Also, they will one day (sniff) grow up and leave home and I want to be a parent that they happily come and visit rather than one whose need for them is oppressive. great post. #theprompt
    Maddy@writingbubble recently posted…joyMy Profile

    • True. My mum and dad do loads and have a full life but my mum had the help of my grandparents living with us from when I was the age of 7 so plenty of free babysitting!

    • Ah you are most welcome my love! When I look at my blog notifications in the morning yours is one of the ones I always choose to read first because you really do write interesting, entertaining, honest, true posts and you don’t pull any punches. And yes, we need to keep those lovely teenage years in mind don’t we?! 🙂 Xx

    • Ah thanks Merlinda – I definitely think it makes us more interesting people to have our little loves which bring us joy. X

  4. I don’t think it’s selfish at all, I think it’s really important that we have moments of joy outside our kids. I think it’s good for us and by extension, good for them. And I definitely agree that joy is in the special moments, both big and small x Thanks so much for linking to #ThePrompt (and for including me on your blogroll) x
    Sara (@mumturnedmom) recently posted…Country Kids: let’s go for a bike rideMy Profile

  5. Peas are awesome. Don’t diss the peas! (My kids hate them though. Sweetcorn is a WINNER).
    Kids are bundles of joy (and poop) and I think it’s natural to want to gain joy from other things, of course. You have to be Mummy, but you also have to be Sam – a human being with needs, wants and dreams. Not selfish at all, completely normal and healthy x
    Chrissie recently posted…What I’m writing – Prickly publishingMy Profile

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