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thoughts from a stormy night

It’s funny how after a big life event (a wedding, a move, a birth, a death- in our case, a miscarriage) life just plods on. I sort of feel like I should wear a t-shirt that says, “I just miscarried”.  This shirt would help in several ways. 1) I would not have to think of creative answers when people ask “How’s it goin’?” (my stock answer is “Hangin’ in there.”) 2) It would save the awkwardness of interacting with people and thinking, “Should I tell them? I dunno…” 3) I would see the shirt every time I looked in the mirror, or saw my reflection in the car window or the microwave door. And then maybe I wouldn’t feel quite so guilty that I’m moving on, that I sometimes forget that, just a little over a week ago, I was pregnant.

I had the thought several days ago that kids are truly the great equalizer of life.  On a day when I am dragging, wallowing a bit in sadness and regret, my children can bring me such joy and delight. They make me laugh when I would rather cry, can even make me squeal with delight as I run to get the camera so I can document Ella’s milk mustache or Drew’s drawing or Isaac’s ornery twinkle.  Their little spirits shout, “We are still here, mom!  And we are worth really living today!” And my tired heart agrees.

In the same way, they can serve to even things out the other way.  When I am feeling proud of my mothering abilities for conquering Aldi or a successful library trip, it only takes one child to open and eat raw hot dogs on the way home, or stealthily tear all pages out of a newly-borrowed book, to bring me down back to reality. “You’re a survivor, not a superhero, mom!” they remind me so abruptly. This, too, is a true blessing.

Oh, kids, the great legacy of our lives, the great shapers of our souls, the great test of our patience and love!

I was talking to a dear friend the other day, chatting about motherhood and family stuff, when she reflected,”Raising a family is a big deal.”  She was right.  It’s not like the kind of big deal that should make you nervous or stressed, fearing that you will somehow screw them up. But it is the kind of big deal that makes you purposeful and careful, knowing that so much is at stake.

I don’t care if I ever win Mother of the Year (I would definitely be quickly disqualified if word got out about how often my children eat hot dogs). I don’t expect to write books on how to do it all. My house is usually cluttered, my car is toy-scattered, and laundry always just a little behind (well, sometimes more than a little).  But two things I hope with all my heart: that my children will rise and call me blessed, and that someday my Father will say, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”

My kids are a big deal, not because they are darling or hilarious or brilliant- though they can be all those.  They’re a big deal because Jesus died for them and then, for a short season, gave them to me.

Hmmm, I meant to write about my kitchen floor, visit to the chiropractor, new book I finished, and the bet I won that brought me a lovely Farm House cinnamon roll last Saturday morning.  But sometimes posts take on a life of their own, so I guess I’ll just let this guy be.

Over and out.

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