Friday, September 18, 2015

Everyday Us

I'm not sure what I'll remember about my life at home with my littles as we all get older.

A few days ago I saw a mom holding her small fella's hand in a store, making important conversation with him, her little buddy. My heart ached a bit for those long days that were often so hard. On this side, they do seem a bit magical. (Go here, here, and here for proof. SWOON!)

As a work-from-homer and a writer, my life is largely solitary now that all three of the kids are in school. I love quiet. But I'm starting to wonder if I have a saturation point. At the very least, these long stretches of quiet are a glaring contrast to 3pm, when everyone rolls in SO loud, SO bickery, everyone wanting my attention at once. The transition makes me feel like I need to rest under a compression blanket while someone brushes my hair.

But I don't want to be a person who always wishes they were in a different part of their day, or a different stage of their life. Looking at that mom with her little boy, I saw the way time has its way with memories and emotions. With any luck, these are all the glory days.

The future and the past and this right here is a web, stitched together and catching the light. We can't have part but not the whole. I want to keep feeling my life, not just remembering it in hindsight.

I want to freeze-frame the easy way we move through our afternoons, all that racket eventually settling down to an exhale. We're home.

Yesterday morning, in my quiet kitchen, I parsed through the day ahead of me. I've been spending most of each day at the coffee shop, finishing up the manuscript for my book. So there was that. But the library books need to be returned (and a fresh stack brought home), I'm heading out next week for a little workish adventure with Jailchap, and Si turns seven in seven more days.

I'm sure it'll feel pretty surreal to see a book with my name on the shelf, but what I want to really feel and really remember is the way I fold a load of laundry most days while dinner is cooking, or how Silas climbed into bed with us after having a bad dream that he was being chased by lightening. I want to remember the way I survived seven straight years (and counting!) of Legos strewn across every floor of every room. I never want to forget the ultra-verbose book Ruby wrote about Piggy and Elephant going to the beach, and the way she spelled cumpashunit. Hey hey, Silas got an 86% on his behavior chart in school yesterday! Calvin taught himself the opener to a Trampled by Turtle song on his violin!

These little things run the risk of blurring together into the greater good, and though good is always good, I'm a small moments girl, so I'll hold onto them like fruit in my apron.

Walking to school a few days ago, just as we we neared the building, Silas asked, "When Jesus made the numbers, how did He know what to call them?" We hadn't been talking about Jesus or numbers, and I sort of never want to solve the riddle of his brain.

{Si's toy box}

Back home in the quiet, it washed over me again. I LOVE MY LIFE.
It doesn't mean it's easy and it sure doesn't mean I always live it well.

Eternity calls, but I'm grateful for the other travelers I get to hold space with while we're here. God knew all along what I needed.


  1. "God knew all along what I needed."

    I needed that one line today, when our little family of 4 finds ourselves flailing against a plan we can't see, wondering why God uprooted us from our little rural life that we loved to transplant us in a big city that we don't love, not even a tiny bit. Time to stop flailing and relax into his goodness.

    1. He knows what you need! I'm sure of it. It took me a long time to get on board with this concept, but it keeps proving itself true. :) Have a fun weekend in your new city.

  2. Yes. Lovely. :-) I think along the same lines, when it hits me hard some days. It's weird and a little unfortunate that it's usually once we come out of a season or growth phase that we see the beauty and tenderness of it. I'd love to be able to stop, right smack in the middle of it and appreciate it for what it is. My biggest turned 18 yesterday, and while I hugged him in the kitchen, I thought how crazy it was. I could still see his tiny little infant hand wrapped around my pointer finger days after I brought him home from the hospital. Those were the days when every day he changed by the minute. And now I'm here by the kitchen stove, hugging a bearded man. When he left the room, I immediately went to find my littles - to hug and kiss and smell them and feel their warm little hands in mine while I still could. The little years are hard. So are the big ones, but they're all so dang precious.

  3. Love the way you put perspective to things that truly matter~ I am always in such a rushed haze these days, longing for some peace and the ever elusive "balance". I'm going to step back and gain a new perspective, thanks to you <3 Also, when did your littles stop being littles???? I can't believe how grown they all are! Man does it go fast!!!!

    1. I know! They're all huge and it's FREAKING ME OUT!!!!

  4. I feel this same way. The quiet and then the overwhelm- it sometimes feels like too much! These words just echo what is on my heart right now! xo

  5. You are so right to take pictures of your day to day life...those little things start to fade as the kids get bigger...I know mine are 25 and 21...and I wish I had social media back when they were we could do silly selfies together...because these days they are not about doing that with their Mom...oh I long for the days of legos and barbies...thanks for sharing these little snippets of your life, it makes me stop and remember and that's such a good thing!

    Cheryl @ The Creative Me and My McG

  6. First of all...SEVEN?? When did that happen? I've been a reader since forever, but that snuck up on me and can't believe it's been so long. Anyway. You have a wonderful way with words and have captured exactly how I feel (and sometimes forget to feel) about every day moments with my little guy. Thanks for "getting it" and sharing it so well with all of us. :)

  7. You're so smart. I've been crying my way through a very rough patch these last couple of months, flirting with self-pity. Oh, who am I kidding; we've pretty much been going steady. And I KNOW, without a doubt, that when it's over, I'll long for these days to be back in my pocket in that romantic way that we do. I am SO missing the moments. Thanks for being where I am today.

  8. Yes to this... feeling extra sensitive to being present after coming back from some time away.

  9. Si just kills me :) In a totally good way of course! He reminds me of my own son (now 34). At 18 months he took apart my pen, but when he put it back together he put the inside part in upside down. Could not figure out why my pen wouldn't work! hahaha
    When Jon was 10 someone gave us a huge box (the kind a stove comes in) full of computer parts. He told Jon that some worked, some didn't and he didn't have time to figure out which was which. My son had a blast going through and figuring out (1) how to test each part, (2) what role each part played in the whole scheme of things, and (3) eventually he figured out how to put them together to create his first computer. I think he had to buy two parts; all the rest were scavenged from the box. I'm pretty sure that big box of parts was his favorite gift ever :)
    Along the way he also met different men who had expertise in various areas (electronics, computers, etc.) who were generous with their knowledge.
    That box of parts opened up a whole new world for our son, who went on to start several of his own businesses (he worked his way through college by keeping a kit of tools in his car and doing on-site computer repairs for both individuals and businesses). Today he works for a start-up in San Francisco called Github that's gone pretty big the past year. And it all started with that box of used parts.
    I see great things ahead for Silas! God will use him in a unique and special way because he is so very special and unique.

  10. Jim and I are totally giggling over Si's toy box! Here's what I think. There is some magic in all of it, in the hard, the loud, the frustrating and even the heartbreaking. I don't want to miss a moment.

  11. I'm better for having read this! Thanks ~

  12. Hold on to each moment tight!! Those three (four) are amazing .

  13. Hi, I'm new here because The Long Awaited Home recommended I pop over for a visit. I'm glad I did because you blog resonates with me, but especially this post! The good, the noisy, the hard, the peace, the drama. It's all life but we love it and wouldn't trade it!! I'm going to browse around here some more and catch up. :)