Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Honesty from a Frazzled Mom

Yesterday was one of those days. I was substituting for an elementary resource classroom for the third day in a row, which I loved and was looking forward to. But I woke up with no idea what I was going to wear, or what we were having for dinner. Wait. . . make that what my kids were going to have for dinner. My school day would be over at 3:45 and my part time framing job began at 4:00. I would just have time to rush home, change clothes, down a cup of coffee, say hi to my kids and rush off again.

First thing in the morning, my daughter brought to my attention that we were out of toilet paper. Where is that box of kleenexes? I know it's here somewhere. My son reminded me he had invited a friend to come home from school with him to play hockey so I asked my daughter to be at home while I worked that evening. She hadn't been too happy with me lately, so I was afraid this wouldn't go over too well.

It wouldn't have been quite so bad, but last week we had some frazzled evenings as well. Not that I didn't plan dinners and feel pretty organized, but the less time I spend at home with my kids the less we are connected and the less hugs and talks and laughs and everyone starts to feel stressed and we each express that in different ways and a feeling of distance starts to grow between us.

By the time we all left school, it had begun raining, so by the time I got home of course my son and his friend were completely soaked and playing in the creek behind our house which I promptly explained was not a good idea. "Well, what else are we gonna do, Mom?" So, the afternoon of playing hockey outside was not going to happen. I put in a cup of water in the microwave to heat for some instant coffee. I went back to my room to change clothes and my son followed me back to ask me "how much coffee do you put in the cup?" I'm touched by his thoughtfulness. The boys say they're hungry so I search for a snack, realizing a trip to the grocery store is past due. My daughter reminds me we're still out of toilet paper. And, off I go to work feeling neglectful and guilty.

A couple of phone calls home told me all was well and everyone seemed happy. Phew! On the way home I stopped by the store for some toilet paper, dog food and a few other things including two brownie mixes which with the 1.00 off coupon on each box I bought for .50 each!

At 8:20 when I arrived home, my daughter was outside visiting with a friend, and I walked into the house to find my son tightening the screws on the dishwasher. I look around and realize someone has done the dishes! Quietly and very matter of factly he told me he had done them, which meant he had put the clean dishes away and put the dirty dishes in the dishwasher. He had also scrubbed the crockpot clean except for one burned on place that neither he nor I could get clean. He had also finished his 30 minutes of reading for school. My heart was so blessed to see his hard work. I tried to find the right words to express to him what a treasure he is and he must be the best son in the world. God had reached into my hectic day. But He wasn't through yet. My son informed me that his sister had started vacuuming but had been interrupted when her friend came by. A little while later, she walked through the door, picked up the vacuum where she left off and proceeded to vacuum the dining room and living room. I tried not to stand with my mouth hanging open. I expressed my gratefulness to her with a hug and an "I love you". I told my kids how much it meant to me that they would help out like that. It lifted my burden and removed the worry.

I guess I shouldn't be surprised when God reaches into my life and blesses me when I feel I least deserve it, but somehow I always am.

"From the fullness of His grace we have all received one blessing after another."
John 1:16

5 comments:

Homesteader in Training said...

Just allowing your kids to see that you "want" to be with them shows them your "heart".They will understand why you can't, as it seems they already do and are blessing you for your efforts! You are going through a tough season right now, just remember not to go through it alone! God is good and I know you know it!

a bite of country cupcakes said...

Mothering is hand in hand with associated guilt!
But Children are a blessing from God ad blessed we are!!

Make the brownies,grab a blanket and a movie and snuggle together awhile one evening...
chocolates sure to be a balm for you all...Works for me!:)

Nonnie said...

what a wonderful reminder karen, that he sees us and knows our heart.....and your children obviously can see your need also....what a very sweet blessing they are!

Just Joni said...

I have been frazzled like this only to be blessed by an unexpected thoughtfulness...and when our kids do it, it just melts the heart. That was so sweet of them to pull together and give you a hand...and equally sweet for you to appreciate their efforts.

Donna said...

How wonderful! And I am sure that your warm gratitude touched their hearts as well!