Kids can be a huge pain in the ass.
Oh what, that’s not sweet? Well, I have to start somewhere, and I am starting with the truth. They can be. There are days that Ben reduces me to a child of his age (that would be five), but since I’m female, let’s say seven or eight, because we all know girls mature faster than boys. So there I am, seven or eight years old, wanting to stick both index fingers into my ears and scream, “YADAYADAYADAYADAYADA” over and over again while he has some sort of ridiculous temper tantrum. Or, when he loses privileges when he’s misbehaved, and he tells me that he doesn’t care because he’s going to sneak into ____________ (my bedroom, the hallway closet, the high shelves in the kitchen) to get the item that I’ve confiscated, so I can think I’ve got one up on him, but I’d better think again. And, if he can’t get to the item, he’s just going to play with something else anyway, SO THERE.
Like I said, a huge pain in the ass.
But God devised a plan for us. He made our children cute. Our kids can push us to the outer brinks of our limits and what we thought were our limits (wasn’t the line BACK THERE?), and then they go and redeem themselves in such a way that you want to clutch at your chest, blinking away tears because it made your heart feel THAT GOOD.
The other day, I was done. Like, stick a fork in me done. I had worked 6 hours and then gone to get Ben from school, which Ben is my main job, the one that takes more work and effort than my office job does. We had worked on his homework, and it took a long time. His teacher had photocopied a page out of Highlights magazine, and it was one of those “can you find these pictures in this picture” sort of deal, and I don’t care if Highlights is geared towards kids, finding those images was hard work! Try finding a sickle (do you even know what a sickle is?) amongst pumpkins, and children dressed in Halloween costumes. We did some reading after that, picked up the house, and then it was time for me to make dinner. I know, sounds like very easy tasks, doesn’t it? But when you are on 38 weeks pregnant, you are performing these tasks with what feels like 20 lb. weights on each ankle. Well, for me, it would be more like 16.5 weights on each ankle.
I was DONE. I called my husband Kevin up to relay the message to him that I would not be eating dinner tonight, because chewing took effort, and I didn’t have enough in me to chew. He made dinner for himself and for Ben, while I lay about on the couch, looking like a very tired beached whale. Then, the beached whale decided to waddle her way to the bedroom, where she could retire in peace. And that’s where she stayed until the next morning.
And the next morning, I was told how Ben really wanted to pray with me the night before. See, that’s part of our bedtime routine. We say our prayers before he gets tucked in for the night. Ben asked Kevin, “Can I say prayers with Mommy?” Kevin told him that I was most likely sleeping, and to let me rest. So, Ben knelt down before my bedroom door, which was closed, and put his palms together, closing his eyes, and he said a silent prayer for me. Kevin didn’t hear what it was, but it was said for me. When Kevin told me that, my heart ached with a feeling of such strong love for that little boy!
And that’s how it happens. You can be having the hardest day, and a simple “I love you” will make it all worth it. Or, you can be feeling like a beached whale, and you find out that even when you are at a low point, your children still love you, enough that they will say a prayer for you even when you can’t be there for them 100%.
How sweet is that?