Y’all, last week was one for the books in the Cunningham household. I never checked, but it had to be a full moon or something because my kids were out of control. There were countless times that I locked myself away in the bathroom just to get 3 minutes of peace and quiet (Mama, if you are reading this, just ignore this part because I know how you worry about the kids getting into stuff when I am not watching). I was texting my husband around 4pm everyday asking him when he planned to be home, because I could no longer handle being the referee and personal maid. My house was a wreck with baby dolls, plastic play food, puzzle pieces and Legos strung out on every level of the house. By the way, have you ever stepped on a Lego? Those little suckers will make you want to mumble an insane amount of profanity under your breath. I have no idea how something so small can inflict so much pain when stepped on. Anyways, you get the picture of how my week was going. I was drained emotionally, mentally and physically. My brain was literally mush and I blame it on my kids and this heat (welcome back to the south with heat indexes of over 100 degrees for 28 days straight). And bless my sweet husband’s heart; he is so very patient with all my insane, crazy mama texts. He gently reminds me that they are just kids trying to figure this whole thing called life out and I am just a mama trying to figure it all out as well.
When I have moments or even days that string themselves together into a long stretch, I have to constantly go back to the things that ground me and remind me what it means to be a mama and to raise these little blessings of mine, because they truly are blessings. I don’t know about you, but having quiet time with Jesus before my kids wake up is crucial for me. I can’t do it in the middle of the day or at night; it has to be first thing. I ask Him to let my soul rise up to meet Him, as the day rises to the meet the sun. Then I dig in to His word with the help of She Reads Truth (an online community for women), I read a chapter from whatever book I am currently reading (Daring Greatly or one of the other five books that I am in the middle of at the moment. And yes, I know I have a problem), and/or blogs that I follow.
Over the past 4 years, I have come across some really great blogs especially ones on motherhood that have been a breath of fresh air just when I needed it most. Since I love to journal and my memory isn’t as good as it used to be, I write down favorite quotes from these blogs, so when I have weeks like I had last week, I can go back to them.
Here are a few to share with you…
“Parenting is hard. Even when—ESPECIALLY WHEN—you’re doing it right.
And don’t become so concerned with raising a good kid that you forget you already have one.” –Momastery
“And we will always remember the most world changing work we can do is this: We can live in a way so that our children will be able to say, not one moment of my life did I wonder if I was adored. Never, ever did I feel alone. And they will pass it on.”
“For a long time, I thought my children were a distraction from the work God was doing in my life and the world around me. I am starting to realize they are the work God is doing in my life. They are the invitation to give, to receive, to be humbled, to grow. They are the vehicles of grace.” -Amy Becker
Just last night, I was reading an article about the North Carolina couple that lost both of their boys in a tragic accident this past May. They lost their 2-year-old son and their unborn son who died 3 days later. During the interview, when they asked the mom what the biggest difference is for them now, two months later, she immediately answered. “Things are just quieter.”
Things are just quieter. Let that sink in.
Today, this week, and in the months and years to come, I will embrace this loud and messy season of my life with these beautiful blessings always at my heels. I will even embrace the baby dolls, plastic play food, puzzle pieces, and yes, even those darn Legos strung out on every level of our house. Because the alternative, would be that things were quieter and cleaner, but that’s not what I truly long for. And I will remind myself that my children are the vehicles of grace that God uses in my life on a daily basis.