April 22, 2014

Not What I Asked For

This morning I was on the phone with my Dad finalizing plans for their trip out to see us. I told him how excited we all are to see them. Dad’s voice warmed on the phone, reassuring me that we were not half excited as he and my mom were. We talked about the kids and how much of a blessing they are. I told him, “They’re so much better than I ever could have asked for.”

Both my kids are so incredibly much more than I could have thought up. They are so much more complex, layered, and nuanced then I could possibly have imagined. There are a million things about them that I’d never think to ask or include if I made a list of what I wanted my kids to be. They are exactly what I never knew I wanted. I might have known H was a girl and J was a boy, but I didn’t know how amazing they’d be. The children I imagined when I was pregnant were nothing but poor shades compared to the full, shining roundness of their reality.

I watched them in the morning light with shining eyes and imagined that if they made my heart this full, so full I wasn’t sure if I would cry, laugh, or just burst—how much more must God feel when he sees us love each other the way we should.

Then H threw tantrum number one of the day. No, she would never get dressed. Ever again. She was literally one minute away from wearing fleece pajamas to school on this warm spring morning. Sigh.

Then J decided morning naps are lame, ruining my plans to get the grocery shopping done before school pick up. That segued perfectly into H’s afternoon tantrum in the produce section of the commissary. We left the grocery store with only vegetables and the sense that, God’s gift though they might be, there are times when I could just as easily sell them to gypsies. I wondered how God feels when we don’t appreciate each other and treat each other badly. Does it break his heart as much as when I see my kids hurting?

It might seem like a day of perfect highs and deepest lows, but it’s really just a Tuesday. It’s an everyday opportunity to remind myself how lucky I am. This is not the family I imagined in my head. It’s not the family I thought I’d have, with three angels in heaven. Yet, it is exactly the perfect family I could never live without. H is one of the most frustrating human beings on the planet, and yet her sweetness, creativity, and toughness inspire me. J doesn’t have access yet to a full toolbox of Mom button-pushing, but there is no sweeter sight and sound then his laughter at belly tickles and neck nibbles. I haven’t mentioned Josh, but believe me when I say I’d be lost without him. If I’m going to have the best of life, with the best kids I would never have been able to ask for, then I will grudgingly, I mean, gratefully take the hard times too. I repeat my refrain, mantra, prayer: “If I do the hard Mommy work now, then they’ll be awesome adults later.” Then I pray for patience. And chocolate.


1 comment:

  1. One day at a time. Good and bad and everything in between. One thing I do know is that God is smiling at you in all your mama love.


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