So, Davin is out at a movie. He’s watching Lone Survivor, I for obvious reasons opted out of that little terrifying number and chose to stay at home with the kiddos.
Typically, cleaning up dishes and hanging out with the kids till bedtime by myself is more of a chore. However, for some reason tonight, it was totally fun. I actually chose to snuggle my daughter in her bed – which I rarely do because by bedtime I’m ready to kick at least one of my kids in the buns and say, “Off with you! I’ve served my time!” I never actually say that, but sometimes inside I feel it:-) I just want some personal space by then. However, tonight – tonight was different. I enjoyed snuggling my baby (who is almost 4) and then enjoyed folding kid laundry.
It probably didn’t hurt that I was listening to peaceful Kenny G on my Pandora and my house was quiet (I don’t need to defend that awesome music choice either).
Here is the real reason I think I enjoyed myself more tonight then a usual night. For the past few days, we’ve been asking the kids to share a moment from their day when they felt happy, their happiest moment of the day. They are still getting the hang of it (the last four days Dani has said, “riding her bike fast and fast and fast), but it’s made me think about what actually makes me happy.
And I have been surprised to find it’s not what I would have thought. Most of my answers included the kids! I am more shocked then you I bet. Here are some of my happiest moments from the last few days:
– When I woke Ellie up in the morning and she had a messy bed head and said in her sweet voice, “hold you?” Which actually means, I want you to hold me with my blanket and snuggle me.
– When Eli brought me a flower from the backyard and proudly announced, “MOMMA! I FOUND a FLOWER AND IT IS FOR YOU!” – It’s all in caps because when he is excited (which is most of the time) he YELLS EVERYTHING HE IS SAYING!
– Pulling weeds in the backyard this afternoon with Dani, she would pick a little one and bring it to me and say, “Momma, I’m a big girl because I get to help you, but Ellie’s not a big girl yet, she doesn’t get to help you.” This was because the weeds were inside the pool fence, and I trusted her to not fall in. It was a milestone for her in her mind, and it was like just the two of us doing something special together.
If you were to ask me, Hey, what do you think makes you happy (generally speaking), I’d probably pick something that is by myself or for myself, like reading, writing, painting my nails, driving alone ect. But since each day I’ve been questioned about a REAL day, I’ve been amazed at what ACTUALLY makes me feel happy. I think it’s absurd that folding my babies laundry made me happy, and seeing her many little socks on the floor made me thank God that I had another baby. That is ludicrous, and it is true.
And lastly, a different happy moment: the other day, I convinced Davin that a spur of the moment road trip to Gott’s was just what our little family needed on a relaxing Saturday.
Upon arrival, I took the twins into the restroom. I put Dani in one stall and Eli in another. He asked me to stay with him, so I did. All the sudden, a very loud hand blower (like WAY louder then normal ones) started up, then the kid using the hand blower started screaming and crying like insanity (probably because it sounded like a jet about to takeoff), which then made Eli freak out, and Dani as well. I’ve seriously NEVER heard a blower this loud. (it was called the razor or the machete, something dangerous, I’m telling you , look out for it!) Anyway, while I tried to assure Eli that everything was okay, I reached under the stall to hold Dani’s hand. The look on Eli’s face said, I want to believe you, and I do for a sec, but no, wait that kid is totally screaming like crazy, something must be very very wrong – freak out! It was so loud between the machete hand blower and the three kids screaming that he couldn’t even hear my voice and I was right next to him. I kept smiling and saying, “It’s okay, it’s just a hand blower, we’re fine.” He then screamed at me, with the most serious face and take charge voice, “GO SEE IF DANI IS OKAY! GO CHECK ON DANI!!!!” I could cry right now just thinking about his serious face and how he was willing to have me leave him alone in such a scary state, just to make sure his sister was okay. He thought this was life and death.
And although this was a frightening experience in the world of a 3 year old, I saw something in my son that day that I’ve seen pieces of before but never in a fully manifested manner. He is a leader, a leader at 3. And he LOVES his sister, more then himself. He was willing to be left by himself in the bathroom stall (something he’s not fond of already) in a terrified state just to make sure his sister was alright. He was demanding that I leave him. I was about to listen to him and go, but as soon as he yelled all that, fortunately the hand dryer turned off and the mom of the kid said, “Wow, that IS a loud hand dryer.” Both Eli and Dani stopped the hysterics, and all were fine. They realized there was no real terror, and as we washed our hands, and they could SEE the hand dryer, they both were fine when it decided to takeoff again. It was the not seeing what was going on, the hearing another kid scream in terror that got them to not believe mom that everything was okay.
Now that I’m done bragging on my son, I feel like this may be how I respond to God sometimes, but without the heroism.
He tells me everything is fine. But it doesn’t’ sound fine. And someone else is screaming and terrified, which means maybe I should be too? I’m so hysterical that I can’t even hear his calming voice to reassure me that everything is alright.
I am reminded of this very insightful blog post I read, which has been ruminating in my the past week. It is such a good illustration of how God loves us in our fear, which I am unfortunately no stranger to. And how God is so much bigger than what we think we’re so afraid of in the first place.
I could have taken that hand blower out! And if my kids would have just looked me in the eye and FULLY trusted me, they would have seen right quick how everything was FINE and that they needn’t waste their energy on hysterics.
But how much energy do I waste on hysterics?
And, this is easy to write, because right now, I’m not in the middle of some life altering crisis, and you might be. Maybe you want to punch me in the face thinking I don’t know the half of it. And, I don’t.
But God knows the whole of it.
In *Jeremiah 29:11 God says over Israel,
“I’ll show up and take care of you as I promised and bring you back home. I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for.”
And if any of you are like, “whatever, that’s Old Testament, God was talking about only Israel, that’s not for me”, well then here is in the New Testament, Romans 8:26-28 (ESV)
“26 Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. 27 And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because[a] the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. 28 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good,[b] for those who are called according to his purpose.”
And look how much fun we had? No reason to scream in the bathroom! We had a great day:-)
As always, thanks for reading!