It’s been so long since I posted that I hardly know what to write. I never intended to allow my blogging to taper off so much in 2013, and then halt altogether for nearly three months. Life just floods the hours, then the days and suddenly the months are gone and I’m left wondering at it all. My mind and heart have traveled so many directions it’s difficult to choose just one to capture, and then capturing so many escapes me altogether and I’m left, empty handed but strangely full at the same time.
I never really reported on my goals for 2013, which has nagged at me, but now we’re so far into 2014 that I wonder how much value there would be in going back to dissect. The start of this new year has been such a whirlwind that I’m not really sure I’ve even got a handle on it yet, let alone a capstone for the year that’s gone. Tonight none of it matters. My heart is shouting, “WRITE!!!”
I wasn’t a great mother today. Every time I got a child on task and turned my attention to another one, everyone else scattered. There are days it feels like the only thing they work at is escaping my notice while they quietly do whatever they feel like doing INSTEAD of the chore/assignment they’re avoiding. Today was certainly one of those days and I didn’t rise to the occasion like I should have. By mid-afternoon I felt up to my eyeballs in everything that isn’t what I wish it was within our home and family, leaving me frustrated and discouraged.
Then I walked past a mirror in our home and was reminded of something I read recently about how a baby, when placed before a mirror, reaches for its reflection in joy and fascination at the life it reveals. When was the last time I looked at myself with joy and amazement at the life that is in me? I made myself pause and look into my own eyes until I could really see myself in them, until I saw enough good that I smiled back at my reflection. In spite of the ups and downs of motherhood and life, I have found myself lately in an ongoing experience of revelation, understanding and learning. I’ll be sitting in a chair, or driving, and suddenly I’m filled with warmth as new (to me) ideas and understanding literally fill my mind. I’m hungry, so very hungry, for the word of God, wanting to devour it all right now and yet feasting abundantly on a single sentence is equally enjoyable. With it has come enhanced and distinct understanding of who I am, not just here, but before I came here – one experience bringing so much clarity and understanding that I still can’t get over it. I am finally learning that although I am flawed in countless ways, God did not make a mistake when he made me. He knows me, understands what makes me tick, and loves me. It’s a miracle and I’m amazed by it.
Alongside and woven with this golden thread of learning is the laboratory of life – life with a lot of children, in a busy household with clutter, fingerprints on every wall, dirty socks hidden in stranger places than I can predict and more meals to prepare than I have interest in cooking. I often feel irritated with myself at the gap between my conceptual understanding of principles and my inability to actually put them into action in our family. Too often I “get it” but struggle to really “live it.” It’s occurred to me lately that perhaps never before has so much been expected of a generation of parents in so short a time as there is now. Technology and media have completely changed the game in raising teenagers and in all our bumbling around trying to find the right balance we also make a lot of mistakes. Tonight I’m grateful that my bumbling efforts also allow me to bump up against the reality and power of Christ’s Atonement. I need it more every day, not less, and the need generates a lovely, prayerful dialogue in my days.
So I guess I’m back. Back because I want my attention span to be longer than the fraction of a second it takes me to scroll past an instagram picture (fun as it is!), because I miss this layer in my life, because if I don’t do this I’m afraid I’ll turn around a few years from now unable to remember anything specific because it’s been such a blur . Back because life is good and because it is hard and because I’m so blessed and because I struggle. Because motherhood matters. So does hope. And family. (And because I can’t get enough of quilting.)