Tag Archives: longing

For LD…

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My dear friend and her family came over for dinner tonight. They’re the ones, when people say, “Wow! Three kids in a two bedroom apartment? That’s crazy!” I say of whom, “Oh, yeah? Well, some of our closest friends have four kids in a two bedroom apartment. Two bunkbeds, one room, just like that, bam, bam, bam, bam.”

So, there were seven kids seven and under at my “house” tonight. We were four adults helping the children regardless of to whom they belonged. We asked help of each other’s spouses because they were closer. We took shifts at dinner. And, amid the chaos, over the course of two hours, my friend and I managed to hold a disjointed conversation about how healthy it is to have more kids than we can handle.

Why? Because it keeps you humble. And keeping humble keeps you needing, needing God, needing neighbors. It’s great for her because she has to say no to some things that she might otherwise let define her. And it’s great for me because it takes me into community and out of my house where I would be very content to be defined by the pretty stories in my mind. It keeps us dependent on something else to define us, someone else. It keeps us needing Jesus.

It keeps our kids needing Jesus, too. Because, Hey-O!, no way I can address every single concern these kids have throughout the day. My daughter asked me today to bring her the glue from the desk. I was like, “You’re sitting next to the desk.”

It teaches them a little more independence because Mom “just can’t even”. And, I have to let them (pour their own milk!) because I “just can’t even”.

It also keeps you poorer. I mean, let’s call a spade a spade, people. And that keeps us in a healthy state of examination. How badly do I want this pair of socks?

And the judging. You can forget about the judging. Everyone should be overwhelmed to the point that they can no longer judge, very healthy.

All this to say, I think we comforted each other tonight. And for all of you out there who can’t have the overwhelming leagues of children you would like to have for one reason or another, let me just say to you that we, the overwhelmed, are thankful, know we should be thankful, and are trying desperately to be thankful all at the same time.

Love to all the Mommas tonight.

Patient Promises…

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The theme for advent around here this year is practicing patience, enjoying the waiting, the longing. I unpacked our Christmas boxes after two years of storage in my Mom’s attic. It’s kind of silly the deep satisfaction I felt when, really, it’s only nativity sets and ornaments, but I did, all the longing of wanting to make a place for our own little family, fulfilled.

The first Christmas we spent at my Mom’s I was very nauseous, about two months pregnant. We had sold our house and moved a month before. There had still been herbs in my garden, the last jalapenos on our bushes. I had left the house where I had birthed two other babies and wasn’t sure yet where I’d be delivering this third, the last one.

On Christmas Eve in our room my husband handed me a small bag. I opened the bag and unwrapped the paper. It was a beautiful etched glass ornament, all smoky metal with gold accents. I looked at my husband in dismay. What on Earth was I going to do with a Christmas ornament when all my boxes were put away and I had no tree? He caught my look and my hands.

“This ornament is a promise. We will have our own place again and our own tree.”

So I wrapped the bulb back up and kept it in its bag in the closet for the next year and a half. And I just got it out today. I opened up the paper and for the first time since two Christmas’s ago admired the etched lines and metal sheen.

Sometimes we wait for a short time. Sometimes we wait a lifetime. And sometimes there is no longer waiting than the forty-five minutes before lunchtime to a four year-old belly.

Wherever you’re at, whatever promise you may have waiting wrapped up on your shelf, I hope that your longing may find satisfaction this season.