Who does she think she is?

All throughout the day I get these urges to write. I have a running dialogue in my head narrating what is going on around me or re-framing thoughts I have into clever little quips that I just KNOW would be amazing on paper.

Yet, they never get written.

There are a lot of things in my life that I would like to be more disciplined about. Spending time in God’s word and time in prayer is one of them. Getting back on the exercise train would be great. Coming up with a consistent cleaning routine so I don’t look around and become surprised that my house has imploded on itself. Writing when the mood strikes. Keeping in touch with far away friends on a regular basis. The list goes on…
But I digress….as a mother of two young boys, I am lucky to get a shower in. Yet, I see these other moms dressed to the nines, smile plastered on their face, calmly de-escalating a toddler tantrum, nails painted….you get the point.

But I have a secret that I am going to share with you. They don’t have it all together either. Not even close.  Whether dressed in Banana Republic (I realize there are more elite designers/boutiques) or Faded Glory (hey, don’t knock Wal-mart) we are the same underneath. We all share the common struggle of being a mommy and being a woman. Of being a wife and being a friend.

That pretty momma you envy when you drop off your little one for a playdate, daycare, or whatever? She might just have had an argument with her husband. Or they may have financial issues. She may need a friend just as much as you do.

Some of us might do a better job of covering up what is really going on, but rest assured that every mom you see needs something; be it a hug, babysitter, grocery money, a girl’s night out, or some time to herself.

Most days I drop Michael off dressed in some sort of workout clothing or ratty sweatshirt that I can’t seem to part with. Sometimes I pick him up that way. I used to feel insecure about the other moms with their make up on and hair did (sorry I had to) and the fact that they had obviously showered. I don’t anymore. Don’t get me wrong, I think everyone should shower for the benefit of the community, and I I don’t enjoy being a “dragon muffin” (aka Michael’s name for a ragamuffin) but I know that it really is ok that I barely managed to brush my teeth before heading out the door…and sometimes Sam’s teeth don’t get brushed until lunch time. Some days are better then others. Today I am going to actually get out of my dragon muffin routine.

If you find yourself having a dragon muffin day or a hot momma day, be kind in your thoughts to the opposite moms you see. Avoid the urge to play the comparison game and have love for the mommas on their dragon muffin days an don’t judge the put-together-momma.

Going to go have a put together day…..

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Martha vs. Mary

My friends Teri Miller and Karen Klasi, both whom have inspired me to blog and continue to blog are amazing women. Both beautiful writers and beautiful women of God.

And I am jealous. Karen’s talent with words far surpasses that of my own and I read her blog posts with joy and sinful envy. Teri is blessed with the ability to see the lessons God has for her through everyday experiences.

Today I feel stuck. Writer’s block as they say. Does that even exist? I heard somewhere at some point in time to write anyway.

So, write I will….

My oldest took the rare nap on the couch yesterday while the youngest was sleeping. He asked me to cuddle with him and if I would play some lullabies.

Of course I would.

Jewel has a lullaby CD that he and I have listened to for a looooong time. As she sang and I snuggled with my enormous 4 year old, my mind started to fill with the things I *needed* to do. Laundry. Dishes. Dust. Vacuum. Change the litter box.

No. I told my brain to shut up.

But both boys are going to sleep…..think of all you can accomplish.

Eventually the “Martha” in me lost (as in the one from the Bible who rushed around preparing and cleaning, not Stewart. Though if I had a crew of people working for me to organize, craft, and clean, I would give her a run for her money.)

I chose to be Mary (as in the one who sat at Jesus’ feet).  I wrapped my arm around my growing boy and felt his body relax and noticed when his breath steadied indicating he was indeed, sleeping. I talked with Jesus while I was there. Thanking Him, praising Him, feeling humbled by the gift of Motherhood.

Waking up 20 minutes later, glad I had chosen to be Mary for a bit, I let my boy sleep for a little longer.

I can’t recall the finest details of eventually doing the mundane household chores (which of course I always do as on to the Lord….not).  But I can vividly remember that snuggle time, adding it to the various snapshots in my mind that my brain has taken throughout this life.

Oh, and if you want, please check out my dear friends’ blogs. You will not be disappointed.

http://tuesdaywithteri.wordpress.com/

http://www.karenklasiwrites.com

On being a Mama

There is nothing more endearing as a mother of boys then seeing my four year old with a fresh haircut, in cammo shorts, shirtless, boxing gloves, beating the heck out of his Hulk Hogan pop em’ sock em’. Oh, and he’s yelling, “You wanna piece of me? Huzzah!” and throws and uppercut.

Or telling him not to pick his nose and eat his boogers….for the 23rd time at least.

Or hearing him say, “Momma, I will be in your heart forever and will always be your son”.

Or when my almost 16 month old wakes up with the worst case of bedhead you have ever seen and smiles at me with is pacifier in his mouth when we wakes up in the morning.

Then there are the moments when either of them cry and they make the same face they did when they came into this world.

There’s the determination on my youngest’s face when he is denied something he wants and is trying to figure out a way to get it. His eyesbrows furrow and I recognize that as my “concentration face”.

Throwing goldfish on the carpet for my littlest because I know that’s where they will end up anyway while I try to finish a dvd workout, and end up picking him up half way through because he wants to be held. He laughs as we spin and jump together and I fall in love just a little bit more.

And all of that just happened in a week.

The wonder of motherhood and the intensity of emotions is something that will forever baffle me. This complex gift is one that I take with a great sense of honor and gratitude. How I wish, oh how I wish, I could just hold on to these days! They slip away like grains of sand through my fingers.

all is stripped away

I stood at the kitchen sink last night peeling the skin of an apple for my oldest son. He loves apples but hates the skin. He also doesn’t like the “yucky parts” where the apple is bruised from being mishandled or past it’s ripening date. After peeling the apple, I inspect it for “yucky parts” and dig them out with the tip of the peeler. The flesh of the apple ends up with mini craters, perhaps not the most appealing to look at, but nevertheless meets my son’s approval for consumption.

As I watched the red strips fall one by one into the sink, it occurred to me that God does the same with our lives. We all walk around with a facade; our “people” face so that others may not reject us (or perhaps we won’t reject ourselves). As we place our trust in Christ, he begins to peel away this mask and uncover the bruised spots of our hearts. We all have them. Whether these bruises are caused by our own sin or the sin of another, they continue to rot us “to the core” if we allow them to. Without Christ to dig out our imperfections, hurts, fear, sin, and so on, we will remain covered in spots. The alternative is to allow Him to do what only He can do: the work of forgiving, healing, and restoration. We may be left looking less than perfect, but we now have approval in the eye’s of the Father. Despite our pock-marked appearance, we can rest in Him knowing that only He can repair the damage in our hearts.

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”

1 Corinthians 5:17