I’ve never posted about a Mother’s Day. There’s always a first…
I woke up to a two year olds cry at 5am. The usual…she doesn’t get up but she just cries out as if to say, mom don’t forget you should get up in one hour. My six year old made my coffee- love him for it, and my kids decided to gift me all 5 of the jewelry items that I had pre-selected from a friends business (even though I had planned to give 4 of the 5 away). That was sweet, and I felt terrible telling them I could only keep one.
At church we had a medical emergency with a young toddler. Thankfully the toddler and family are well, but it was one of those really intense moments where you get to watch people in action as first responders and make tough calls, and calm tears and pray for peace, and follow-up with those who were present and check-in, and check-in again. I am learning that I am not the best in emergency situations, but I am so, so, SO very thankful for people who are.
I led all our grade schoolers at church in this cool prayer called, Praying in Color by Sybil MacBeth. She’s creative, and you should check it out. The idea is praying without words, using doodling. Who doesn’t love to doodle? We prayed for moms. We wrote a name for God and then doodled while we created space to think about, reflect and listen to God. We wrote a name for mom and then doodled while we created space to think about and offer up our moms to God. It was challenging and fun, and funny, and amazing, and encouraging and difficult all at the same time. One friend there was doodling for a mom who recently passed away from cancer. One mom opened her card at home and saw the words “Messiah” and “Mom” on the same page…she jokingly wondered about what we were teaching her child. That was funny. Praying in Color needs a little explanation.
We handed out big, white carnations to all the moms at church and decided that it’s more enjoyable and easier to just give them out to every women at church…some of the young college students gave some funny looks I’m sure. My favorite moment was giving one out a woman at our church who I know has been praying and waiting for a child of her own. In a unique and special way, she is a mom- she just doesn’t have a child yet. It was a mom carnation of hope.
I got to hold a new born at the end of service. He wiggled and squirmed and fussed, but I ooh’d and aah’d at his cuteness anyway. He made me miss having a newborn [but right now one of my precious newborns is now 4 years old and making the loudest angry ruckus downstairs because I won’t wash his tank top ‘right this minute’], so no, never mind. I don’t need another one thank you.
I came home to celebrate Mother’s Day with my family. My kids were napping but when they woke up all I wanted was one picture with them. I bribed them with lollipops thinking to seal the deal and make a happy family photo. Oh no. Because what 2 year old will smile for a lollipop? Well, not mine anyway. Instead we got tears and tantrums on the front deck and just one picture of a mom with 2/3’s of her kids, trying to smile, but really just sad that her baby girl wouldn’t even hug her mama.
But some snuggle time with my baby while she ate her dinner, a margarita and a yummy plate of bbq chicken, pulled pork, home made coleslaw and fresh green salad took some of the pain away.
My day ended with a killer back ache and an hour of snuggling a feverish baby while he slept (not mine). I felt bad for him, but didn’t mind the fact that I one job and one job alone in that moment. Hold the sick baby. I can do this. I can pray and pour love on him, and give him what he needs in that moment.
At the very end of the day (because you know your day doesn’t really end until your head officially hits the pillow), after rolling the kids whining and crying into their beds, 3 times, we sat down to take a breath- I read two words of encouragement from friends online.
” This is the true story of a family that is trying its hardest to stay rooted and grounded in love but facing so many struggles along the way. Don’t believe the fairy tale but despite the fact that for many of us it’s tough much of the time…it is beyond worth it.”- CMC
” God knew what was needed today and provided it.” – PC
Both of these were important for me to hear. Because it affirmed for me that in my day there is space to acknowledge the hard stuff, and grace to accept that God knows I need when I’m in the middle of it. So what do I choose to do with all that I experienced? The crummy stuff buckles me, and brings me to my knees. The good stuff allows me to lift my head and hope for a new day today. I was thinking of dandelion seeds. They are pretty amazing. On the one hand they are a weed, annoying. On the other hand they are both a bright yellow spot of sunshine and a child’s whispery breath and dream flower. The seeds get blown, and they are gone. Our experience of the dandelion is all about perspective. The moments of this day were like the little dandelion seeds. They have come and gone, but will produce something new. Today I’m choosing to view the dandelion not as a weed but as a bright yellow spot of sunshine.