Thursday, October 13, 2011


My kids get on my nerves. They make messes and don't clean them up. They bring home homework from school that requires my assistance as well as a firm nudge to get it done. They eat the entire bag of Baked Ritz Crisps in ONE AFTERNOON {and then have the nerve to wonder why I won't ever buy that stuff unless it's on sale}. They create mounds and mounds of laundry. They leave wet towels on the floor. And they talk. A lot.

But..... I love them dearly.

Today, I ran through the aisles at Publix quickly picking up a few necessities: chicken for dinner, sugar free French Vanilla coffee creamer (praise the Lord they were back in stock... I've been using the regular stuff all week), and beer. I picked up TWO bags of the Baked Ritz Crisps {gotta love the BOGO stuff at Publix!} and a bag of the iced oatmeal cookies, knowing that would make me mom of the universe for this afternoon.

As I made my way through the store, a man and woman caught my eye. I could tell that they were mother and son, and I didn't think too much unusual about the pair until I got close enough to hear their conversation. His voice sounded younger than my own ten year old boy's, and I could tell that she was sending him about to pick up things along the aisle, giving him a task. He would go and retrieve an item and bring it back to his mother, and then she'd send him to get another. She shopped at the same time, and her buggy was near capacity. He sang to himself as he hunted through the apples. He mumbled something beneath his breath in the dairy aisle.

I got into the lane to the left of them to check out, and I overheard her send him to get a bag of ice. She wanted the small bag. He returned with the larger of the two sizes. Her eyes were clearly perturbed, but her voice never showed it. And my heart sank down inside of me in shame. I am so blessed. So very blessed beyond belief to have these two beautifully healthy children. And though their messiness and weird sense of humor drive me nuts sometimes, they are but fleeting seasons in their lives. This mother's child will never fully mentally mature; she is perpetually stuck in this one phase of life with him. Watching how she handled him so patiently and thinking of what her daily life must be like humbled me. And I needed it.

Being a mom is hard. Yes, it's incredibly rewarding, but sometimes the rewards are few and far between. I find myself in a state of wanting the good to always outweigh the bad, and that's just not realistic. If they would clean up after themselves more... if they would be more organized... if they would do this or that or whatever, then life would be easier. What an awful way to think.

Dear Lord... thank you for your gentle reminder today to be thankful for my children. They are Your creations, and I should marvel in them every day. Thank you for keeping them so healthy and safe all these years. I pray for that sweet mother in the grocery store today... may You grant her every ounce of patience and energy she needs for this day and all her days after.


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