Being a mom of two little ones is exhausting and I give much applause to those ahead of me on this journey with more kids than I do. Someone asked me recently how I do it. How do I survive the tantrums, the simultaneous crying, the constant requests for ‘mo num num’ (more food) and fits that follow if requests are denied?
I’ll be the first to tell you that I don’t have super strength. There’s a 24 pack of Cherry Coke sitting on my dryer reserved for weary kid days. When my husband sees one out, he knows what kind of day it’s been. He’ll come home, look me in the eyes and say, “Yep, you’re done.”. There are days where the only goal for the day is keep the children alive, cause not much else will get done. When I just want to cry cause I’m tired, but I don’t want to go to bed because I want to enjoy this quiet moment with the man I married (but hardly see as we are each assigned a kid each night) and have an adult conversation. Plus, I know that I’ll need to wake up and go through the regular morning ’emergency room’ routine again of everyone being so hungry they just can’t function.
How do I do it?
Well, clearly Jesus has to be at the top of the list. He probably actually invented everything on my list of coping strategies right? I mean…..he did make cherries…..for Cherry Coke, right?
But,seriously, one of the main things He’s helped me realize is I can’t fixate on the present. If I stay fixed on the present I’ll just see cracker crumbs, toddler emotions, little hands getting in the way, and lots of messes.
But that’s not forever.
I remember when she was just learning to walk. Now she uses her miniature broom to ‘help’ me sweep. One day, she will sweep a house of her own. I remember when she could only say “kitty’. Now she uses all the words in her vocabulary (plus a lot I don’t understand) to try to communicate her wants and convince us of her plans. One day, she will influence the world through her written and spoken language. I remember when her little hands were just learning to grab things. Now she can fetch needed items and clean up her toys. One day, her hands will rescue others, grow food, write books, serve her neighbor, etc.
The present can be overwhelming at times. Especially if you don’t see much fruit from your labor that day. But the present is temporary and passes quickly.
I’m thankful the Lord sees my finished product and doesn’t give up on my present condition.
6 being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
Since I know I’m still in process, it gives me more grace to give to my little ones in process. Just as I ‘tag along’ with Jesus to learn from his example, they follow me around (and never leave me alone for a moment) because they are learning from mine.
Lord, please help me see past the present. Help me to see your story for their lives and your goals for them. Please help me give them the grace you pour on me as you continue the ‘good work’ you’ve begun in me.
Because, today her little hands are trying to press all the buttons on this computer while I type, but one day she will send her own message to the world.