Myles is still at work and both kids are in bed, sleeping. I’ve cleaned up from dinner and picked up the immediate messes. The rest can wait. It seems too perfect an opportunity to sit in solitude. Some tea might be in order. (Except my favorite mug is dirty and that would require me to wash another dish). Skip tea, water is fine.
So, Mother’s Day was yesterday. It wasn’t really a particularly remarkable day, however, it was unique in that pretty much everything I did was in some way revolving around myself and my life as a mother.
Gavin is teething. He’s cutting two molars and really, I can’t think of many things that sound worse. Seriously, a bone with hard, pointy and blunt parts has to literally break through tissue and skin. Babies are tough! That sounds awful and honestly, I can’t blame the kid for being up off and on all night upset about his damaged mouth that is erupting new parts. I know how annoying it is to get something stuck in my teeth. It’s almost impossible to ignore the sensation of something being in my mouth that wasn’t there before. Imagine how bizarre it would be to have a whole new entity agonizingly erupting slowly through what was once smooth flesh. Yuck. The poor dude is busting some new teeth through so I’m rubbing stuff in his mouth, occasionally providing Motrin and forcing him to wear an amber necklace. Sorry little man, it helps.
After a long night, Myles kicked off Mother’s Day by taking Gavin for me in the morning and I went through all the clothes I’ve been saving up, planning to one day wear them again. That was probably as painful as cutting teeth. Few feelings compare to squeezing a much larger, squishier and lumpier version of oneself into clothes that once draped nicely and rested on bones that have long since disappeared and are now enveloped in layers of goo. Blech. Being a mom is a beautiful thing, but it’s not always pretty! Love handles are for the birds. So now I have a gigantic stack of clothes that can stop taunting me from the totes they’ve been stored in since I peed on a stick and Molli came into my life. My body has done and can do amazing things, but being a size 2 is no longer anywhere near that list. And somehow it’s probably ok.
We are moving next month. If all goes according to plan, we will be out of here and into a duplex the first of June. My parents are graciously sharing their crawl space for anything that falls into the category of “things we want to have but don’t need yet.” This includes boxes of academic papers, files, holiday décor and baby clothes/paraphernalia. We don’t plan to be done having kids so we don’t want to get rid of kid things. Why would we want to re-buy entire wardrobes? We wouldn’t, so they are in the “things we want to have but don’t need yet” portion of the crawlspace. By letting us use their crawlspace to store things, they are saving us $50/week that we would have to use to rent a storage unit, and in turn, that $50 can go to paying back student loans. We have a good thing going on here. Blessings are plentiful from the seemingly insignificant to the profound.
Mom and Dad graciously watched our kids while we drove out to a friend’s house (who lives way the heck out there) to pick up some big things we bought at her garage sale last week. Myles would have gone alone, but lets face it, my muscles were needed. Hauling Gavin all over the place should place me somewhere between Arnold Schwarzenegger and the Hulk. Regardless of my incredible muscles, it was great to have a date with my husband. I am blessed to have a wonderful husband who works so incredibly hard for our family. We don’t have a lot of one on one time together but we have learned to appreciate what we do get. We had a date in his truck driving out to pick up a workbench, and it was good. Times have changed, kids have “interrupted” the typical dates of the past. We have learned to value each other and our time together very differently, making the most of a simple truck ride, being grateful that our most special gifts are being well cared for. By spending time with our children, my parents are consequently nourishing our marriage. Even in the little things they do, they are helping us tremendously.
Upon return to my parent’s house, a big part of my brain was screaming “LEAVE! Save yourself!” but I didn’t. Gavin was in the bathtub while Molli was in one of her moods; One of those special moods stemming from a lack of sleep and food. How does one teach a two year old that she needs sleep to function properly and food to stay alive, or at least to be kind? It was a mood where everything results in a meltdown and loud noises constantly coming from her mouth. These moods rob her of her ability to walk properly and any semblance of an “inside voice.” Good heavens, it is never fun to come face to face with the hungry, tired Molli-monster.
In the end we left my parents house and came home with full hearts and pure joy. The car ride was filled with silly songs and random conversations with my daughter. Yes I know the muffin man, the muffin man, the muffin man. The special moments in car are a good time, and the midnight consolation sessions are too. If my babies want to sing and be silly with me, I’m all over it. If they cry because their gums are being ripped open, I’m there. Two in the morning? It’s not my favorite but I absolutely treasure their weight in my arms. I am honored to be the one these kids call upon for consolation, fun and love. I am learning to love my husband in a way that is different than ever before and likewise I’m learning to love myself differently. God has placed these amazing children in my life and I will never be the same.
There will be less sleep, more messes, and love handles. There will be tears, tantrums and meltdowns for years to come (the kids might even have them too). There will be more emotions than my heart can handle and perseverance beyond what I ever thought possible. There will be patience. There will be laughter. There will be frustration, disappointment and failures. There will be progress and successes. There will be highs and there will be lows. But most of all there will be LOVE. I am called to and I graciously accept a life dedicated to loving my children, nurturing them and guiding them toward holiness, preparing their little hearts for life. I am Mommy and there is no one else I’d rather be!