Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Turning It Around

Yesterday was a long, non-smooth day. 

Despite the heat, my kids played outside in the morning.  But from the minute they walked back in the house they were a handful.  Three handfuls.  And I only have two hands.

They played games that annoy me because they involve shrieking and opening and closing doors.  They bounced beach balls too hard (I can’t even type that without feeling like an intolerant jerk – but it’s true – loud beach balls drive me cray-cray).  They intentionally irritated one another, especially Hunter, till the victim ended up in tears.  There was tattling.  There was shoving.  There was hitting.  There were countless requests for tv time or a movie. 

One of Maddie’s chores for the day was to make a pan of bars for dessert for supper.  So there she stood in the kitchen after having snuck away from the other two, ready to do one of her favorite things – baking.  She dumped half a cup of flour on the floor and jumped off the chair which slammed it into my foot and the words flew out of my mouth.  Not the kind of words I will regret for the rest of my life.  But angry, irritated, impatient words.

Her shoulders slumped and the corners of her mouth turned down.  “I don’t even want to do this anymore,” she muttered.

Oh man.  “Neither do I,” I thought to myself.  Somehow in that moment I scraped enough Mom-goodness together that I made a joke and made the rest of the job more fun.  She laughed and soon the pile of flour was wiped up, the mixer was whirring away, and the smile was on her face again. 

I’m not saying the rest of the day was smooth-sailing.  The bickering continued.  One kid hated my supper.  Bedtime was a long long long drawn out affair. 

But I am encouraged to know that just because I get it wrong on occasion, that doesn’t mean I always will.  I can turn it around.  With a joke.  With a smile.  With a hug.  With an apology.  With a prayer. 

Today I’m praying for all the Mommas who are slogging their own way through summer – be it the fun days or the monotonous ones.  It’s all exhausting in its own way, isn’t it?  Praying that God will give you reminders to have grace for yourself and opportunities to turn those hard moments around when they sneak up on you.

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