What an afternoon, what a phase these children of mine are going through right now. Phase, I laugh because I can remember a friend of mine laughing at that word, ‘phase’ she said, there is no such thing! I must admit, I’m beginning to understand what she means. It’s all about having what seems an impossible amount of patience at the moment. Working through each situation gracefully, and doing your best not to let that pang of what ever it is that builds up inside your stomach out, like a bubbling effect that’s about to explode, almost like you are doing so well in not showing your children that you are about to lose every last bit of patience you’ve stored up for the day, and turn into a monster, your body is crying on the inside. The attempt to not say something your going to regret becomes more and more difficult. Then before you know it……. That ‘nice idea’ of letting your children make hot chocolate with you is the last straw to that attempt. One wrong movement and the chocolate powder is in the air, up like a puff of smoke, the cloud that is formed above begins to gravitate to the kitchen table, and floor, and chairs, and children’s clothes, and hair……… Then it’s the hands, oh yes, the hands, and their in! My kids are really happy in this moment, so why am I not?! I literally just stand there, trying to keep up with two toddlers that can’t actually hear me because of the excitement of the chocolate powder, and I might add, the two full cup of milk at the table that are also about to be added to the trouble. So what do I do, do I think ‘be still and know that I am God’ (psalm 46:10) no, unfortunately for me, that came after my responses. Instead, I cried, then laughed nervously at the sight of two toddlers running circles around me, (still having fun!) That was it, I had nothing left, I’d already bathed them, but by now they were covered in chocolate again. I managed to focus, get a cloth, start cleaning up the table whilst my sons hands were scrambling around trying to get the last bits of the powder.
Sometimes, in fact lots of times, I can laugh in these situations, after all it is only a bit (a lot) of chocolate powder, it doesn’t seem rational to respond badly really, does it?However, when a situation like this catches you just at a time of weakness, just at a time when the enemy is out to get you, when all your reserves of patience have been emptied, it takes one ……..little……….thing. Sometimes, I can’t help but beat myself up for having the nerve to be upset about such a small thing, and begin to compare my life to another’s less fortunate life. That’s when the guilt starts. Then I am reminded of the wonderful blessing that God has given me, to be mother, to have the opportunities we have and to be loved and forgiven.
You see, it’s funny, because after all of this, I stumbled across a note page that I’d written a while back. It reminded me of my blessings,
This morning the kids played beautifully together in the living room making towers and passing each other blocks. My husband and I were very thankful to have some time together to pray and have our coffee before the day began, it’s a very rare occasion that we can sit in bed on a weekend, if we do normally try, it’s accompanied with screams of bickering downstairs because ‘she took the train off me’ or ‘he pushed me!’. This morning was different, there was a calmness about it.
The time came for Dan to go to work and for me to think of something that I can do with the kids this morning. I decided on cake baking! Breakfast muffins, yum!
I was in the bedroom just finishing off brushing my teeth and I could hear two little voices downstairs. I began to listen, and I realised that with every creak of the floor in our bedroom that was heard below by the children when I moved, there was a gasp of anticipation. Huuuuh! Is……..that………mummy……?, then I would walk across the room, and…….huuuuuh, is……it……? In a squeaky voice of excitement, is……..it…….mummy…..? Is……it…….her……?! I left the room and look down the stairs and all I could see were two little toddlers sweet little heads peering over the baby gate, holding onto the top of it and jumping up and down, gasping, saying, ‘yay!!!!!!!!!!!!! It is mummy!!!! Yay!!!!! Mummy!!!!!! Mummy!!!!!!!
Wow, that was enough for me, the tears flowed down my face, these two little beautiful children were so ecstatic to see me, so ecstatic to know that I was coming down to be with them, so ecstatic to have ME! What a blessing, to have two amazingly gorgeous children that love me with everything they have. This was such a beautiful moment, and a picture of joy that will never leave me.