Talk about baby #3 has been happening in our home lately.
Side note to my mom: I know you’re thrilled. We may even have five just to keep those grand kids rolling in 🙂 (There’s significant sarcasm here).
Anywho, my swearing up and down that I’ll never have another natural childbirth has proven me a liar. This is our plan again. It’s not the delivery that’s stalling my desire to try to bring another life into our family, rather it’s the whole being pregnant thing. There are few things I loathe in this world. The top of my list includes the state of Missouri, Costco on the weekends (or anytime really), packing for vacation, and being pregnant. I get irritable just thinking about it.
Our logic up until this point is we’d get the having toddlers part of parenting “over with” so we can “move on” with our lives i.e. vacation, ease in travel, sanity in the evenings, sleeping in, you know-our own comfort.
This morning I’m convicted of our outlook. I’m convicted of the selfishness in my heart. I’m convicted that I’ve been rushing my children to grow up so I can sleep more, exercise (ha!), have my house in order, my whatever, my this, my that, my, my, my. *Sigh*
I have not treasured as well as I should have the past 3 1/2 years with our daughter and 5 months with our son. I’m all at the same time ready for K to be in school and fearful at the thought of her being gone all day. I’ve begun feeding our son solids and been cranky that he’s so attached to me that I’m the only one who can put him to sleep at night. My resentment to not having what I think as enough time for myself and the things I want to do has become painfully clear to me. As C still wakes once or twice in the night and K wakes up in the morning with the energy of an entire pep rally rolled into one little body, I find myself looking for some peace.
Trying to create peace looks like being absent, mentally and physically. I’m just hoping that we can get on to the next phase so our life will have ease. The Bible assures me this side of Heaven that is impossible. It’s never gonna happen. Sure, there will be periods of stillness and each part of my life should be abounding with joy, but the reality is my life is just going to be pure chaos until I choose to embrace this season and not wish it away.
The wretchedness of my own heart is so clear. I have many friends who would give their material possessions for a life with two off the wall children. I have friends with children who are not healthy. I live many hours from both sets of my children’s grandparents and I assure you they’d love to snag them all day, every day, just to cuddle them. Lately I have done a poor job of appreciating my gifts. And I am sad.
Our next child, God willing, will be another layer of pandemonium. We will embark on waking every hour or two through the night for six weeks. We will navigate through potty training and attempting to keep two other munchkins from burning the house down or injuring each other while I nurse the new baby. We will not spend enough alone time with each child because we’ll have to decide whose immediate needs or “needs” should be tended to first. Our attempts to have intentional, quality time with each child individually while also figuring out how to incorporate play with a newborn, toddler, and a preschooler will probably make me lose a few brain cells.
But this is just a season, and what should be a sweet season. One we aren’t rushing through to get on to our own personal preferences on scheduling and life living, rather, one that relishes the moments, tantrums and all, and thanks God for the opportunity to be trusted with their sweet little spirits. When they’re slamming doors, going through a break up, or fighting with friends, we’ll probably wish they could just be toddlers again to shield them from the pain of the world.
So today I choose to not see hauling my children in the car to run errands or picking up the living room for the 28th time today as an inconvenience. I choose to teach our daughter more skills of self-sufficiency by having her help clean. I choose to make our errands a learning opportunity-even if it’s just “Hiding in the Rounders at Nordstrom is not a Fun Game for Mama. Now Get Out.” I’ll let C sleep on me just a little longer, because despite his deceptive man-child size, he’s still just a baby. I’ll continue to be prayerful about God’s will and timing to bring another child into our family in an effort to keep my hedonistic outlook on our family in check. Hopefully waiting for our life to resemble what it used to is rejecting God’s gift and essentially telling Him He’s got it all wrong.
We’ll deal with the early, or late, bedtimes and the crying for seemingly no reason. We’ll cherish the hugs and the “I love you’s.” We’ll watch no less than a trillion and seven episodes of Daniel Tiger or Sofia the First. We’ll get spit up and peed on. We’ll go to bed exhausted knowing we worked hard serving our family-knowing full well that one last cuddle and and drink of water provides our children with a great sense of love and safety.I want to keep being just a kiss away from making injuries feel better. I want to be one feeding away from providing comfort to our son. I want to just enjoy being enough to be able to meet so many of their needs.
So, are we done yet? I sure hope not.