Thursday, March 3, 2016

This is probably going to be too long....

It's me, not you...this has been a long season of hibernating for me. I have been uninspired and tired...so tired. This third pregnancy has been a little harder for me. My first two had their ups and downs but this little girl hit me hard from the beginning. I have never been super sick with either pregnancy (sick but not throwing up) and this time around...well, let's just say the little Link I'm hosting was not a fan of her home for a while. She still has her moments and I told Marty the other day that I hope she's more agreeable on the outside, otherwise we're really going to be in for it with her. She is nameless also, which is surprising for us...we were pretty set on the names for our first two...so maybe she's just angry that she doesn't have a name yet...

Annnnnyway, I had this moment yesterday, sitting in the drive-through line at Chick-fil-A that was an eye-opening moment for me. I was sitting in that long line, waiting to order dinner for the kiddos, because after yesterday's day I wasn't making dinner. Yesterday won.

To paint the picture a little more clearly I'll start with the day before yesterday, after a long (napless) day of play, G fell off of her tricycle onto the handlebars, or so I assume based off of what she told me and had two huge, horrid bruises on her belly. Me, being a slight hypochondriac, immediately thought of internal bleeding, and called the doctor to assess her situation. The doctor wanted to see her the following day to rule anything out but was fairly certain she was fine.

I hesitated to make the appointment for Wednesday because I had to go in Thursday to that same office for my own prenatal check up, and debated how bad of a mother I would sound like if I asked to wait a second day and kill two birds with one stone. My fear of judgement won out and I made the appointment for Wednesday knowing full well I had to bring the little crazies with me to my check up the following day.

So Wednesday afternoon right when they should have been napping we were sitting in the waiting room at the doctors office. Gabriella turned out to be fine, thank God, but her normally mellow brother decided to completely lose it in the doctors office from the moment we stepped in the door, right up until about the moment we left. I'm not sure why he was such a disaster, because he normally is so wonderful in situations like that. I was one stressed out mama, trying to bounce an inconsolable little one while trying to have a decent conversation with the doctor about G's belly.

So back to Chick-fil-A, a young woman came bouncing out of Chick-fil-A to go to her car, and for a moment she reminded me of me before I was married with kids. She was slim, athletic maybe, super put together, chatting on her phone, and got into her cute little car and drove off. She didn't look tired, her car was clean, seemingly carefree (I know, I know....probably not but) … All things that reminded me of me before children. I knew today I looked tired, I looked down at myself sitting in the drive-through line, in my slightly pilled Blanqi maternity leggings and cardigan, hair in a messy bun, empty Starbucks cup still in the cup holder (because one coffee wasn't cutting it) and was a teeny bit envious.

It's been a rough year of getting a schedule worked out with Marty's job, learning the art of budgeting (damn you Target!!), and just juggling life with littles in general. I know I don't always look tired or frazzled but I knew today I did. Then, from behind me the sweetest little voice from the backseat started belting out Adele's "set fire to the rain" and I was immediately pulled back to my awesome life that I would not change for anything. Being tired, being "not so put together", not having a super clean car, are small sacrifices when I think about the gifts that I have now. These kids, Marty, fill my world with such joy. But I forget sometimes that without them, being single, I was lonely. I wasn't quite whole yet.

When I'm cooking dinner in the kitchen, and I hear a little belly laughs coming from the living room I don't remember, (and I don't necessarily want to) what it was like before they were here. It's worth it. It's hard to remember that sometimes when we put on the glasses that see through the eyes of the world. It's not just worth it, it's the most necessary thing we do.

It's Lent, and being a mom during Lent is a lot different than being single during Lent. There are no extended holy hours in my life right now where I can sit in silence and bask in God's glory. But there are amazingly holy days where I can bask in the blessings of the children that God has given us. Trying to explain the Stations of the Cross to a three-year-old is not easy, but there's Grace there.

A very dear priest friend of mine told me once, shortly after becoming a mom that my prayer life would never look the same again, he laughed and said "your life will never look the same again." And that's because, in the same way that Christ calls us to conversion on a daily basis, our lives call us to conversion on a daily basis, we are constantly changing. When we look through the eyes of the world, conversion seems hard, and sometimes unfulfilled.

Marty recently was telling me about an article he had read about a woman claiming that being single was so much better than never being married. She had nothing to compare this to because she had never been married. But she staunchly believed that being able to live your life for yourself was the best option. Her reasons seemed very worldly but also desirable: traveling, having money to spend on yourself to go out to eat or buy whatever you wanted, being able to go out with your friends at will. But she's never experienced the flipside of things.

The flipside of things for some of us is being married, for some it's being single, for some it's being called to the religious life but we are never called to put on the glasses in the world when we look at our life. We need to look at things through the eyes of Christ and see what's worthy, what's good. So on days like yesterday I am so thankful for that little voice in the backseat singing her heart out, because it was the reminder I needed from God that this is all so worth it.





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