Gah. It’s good. The end of the week is almost here and I’m tired. But it’s a good kind of tired. I’ve been challenging myself to ‘stay present’ more lately and while it definitely takes more emotional energy, it’s been so rich. It’s easy to stay glibly present in good moments, but the hard ones? Those are the ones I have tended to run from.
Kintsugi has always intrigued me. When a small dish from the treasury of my Grandma’s china that had been passed down to me broke the other week, I almost tossed it right into the trash can. But mid toss I stopped and said out loud, ‘No. Verna! She knows how to do kintsugi! I want to do that with this dish.’ At that point I immediately picked up the phone and put in my request for a little help and know-how for the project which turned into a fun morning and lunch together.
In the past, and sometimes still, I can find it difficult to slow down the intake and focus on being established instead of frantically going for more. I’m learning that it’s okay to give myself permission to listen to the same message or read the same chapter over and over again; to learn and re-learn a new habit; to move in peace and let the message or lesson sink deeply into my spirit.
I haven’t always done well with living in touch with the desires inside of me. I haven’t always seen or treated them as gifts. But God is teaching me the beauty of them. The more I learn to lean into and trust the Holy Spirit, the more He’s teaching me the joy and the graceful art of embracing those desires while simultaneously releasing them and going quietly on with what is ‘today’.
I used to think the only things of worth were the big things ‘out there.’ It was difficult, actually, almost impossible for me to find fulfillment and satisfaction in doing the everyday stuff. Now you moms out there realize that so much of mom life is made up of exactly this—normal everyday ordinary stuff. And when I became a mom at 34, I wasn’t prepared for all it would show me. It showed me I hated the normal hidden everyday stuff. It showed me I’d never learned to thrive well in the everyday gears that are so important in the foundation before going out in the bigger world for all the bigger things.
This morning was rushing fast by me again. Lately it’s felt like that’s the way my entire day goes. Rushing. Fast. Swirling me along with it. Baby, homeschool, laundry, meal planning and making, answering a gazillion questions, working a small side gig as time affords and all the while keeping the atmosphere open and pleasant between the small humans. My days go by SO FAST! This morning was no exception…
So, in the middle of the last scramble that can come in these last couple days before Christmas, don’t forget to go slow. Breathe in peace and follow the Prince of Peace. Exhale peace and walk in peace. Marinade in the love of heaven come to earth. Stay in it a little longer than normal. And then go give it away to your husband or wife, to your children, and to everyone else you meet. It’s why He came. He came to bring quality of connections; peace instead of performed perfection…
The turkey has been demolished. The yummy delicious dishes that took time to make are now mostly devoured and declared to be good. Naps and sleep that were forgone in order to make the dishes in between juggling baby and real life are forgotten in the warmth of memories made around the food. Hearts are full and grateful here. It was a Thanksgiving to remember.
This morning was a mix of play and work, cloudy faces and happy faces. In the middle of folding Sunday and Monday’s laundry with the little tots I wondered, ‘what did Eve struggle with as a Mom?’ The first mom ever. No other moms before her or around her to compare herself with. No endless approaches to sort through. No moms saying you ‘should’ this or that. She was the first. Was she a crunchy perfect organic mom? Or was she okay with peanut butter and jelly sandwich days for her boys? Did she struggle to respond instead of react? Did she get tired of telling her kids for the 99th time to ‘chew with your mouth closed’? Or did she just let that one slide? Did she struggle to make the choice to stay present some days? Did she ever snap and tell Adam, ‘I need a break?’
I never wanted kids. I wanted a career, I wanted to climb the corporate ladder. I wanted to keep going back to school for higher degrees. We were married six months when we found out we were expecting our first child. At the time I was working in a doctor’s office and I asked my co-worker to administer a pregnancy test. She smiled and gave me a big hug and said ‘congratulations, it’s positive.’ I felt like my whole world crumbled. I held back my tears in front of my co-worker, as I did not want her to think I was a terrible person for not being excited about this news. But I definitely was not excited. In fact, I would even say that I was in denial. I was a little numb…