Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Enough Already!!

Oh, how many times have I heard those words escaping my lips with two boisterous toddlers and chatty cats (no, really, the cats are chatty) in the house. It seems that there are days that the noise and chatter begin with the rising of the sun and end with, well, maybe never between crying children and cats that have lost their minds at night. 

We are instilling great table manners in our children. What?

I've shared before the struggle of embracing all the chaos as a normal part of life as I know it now. Leaning toward the "P" of the Myers-Briggs, I crave a little structure, even if I'm not an expert at carrying it out. The Hubs will tell you that my first instinct is to recoil when plans change, though I hope he would also say I am getting better at taking a deep breath and then assessing whether it truly is, in fact, going to be the end of the world. Better, not perfect. 

This is what it looks like when your son licks the ranch
dressing off his plate. 

Add to this chaos two toddlers now in the thick of the "do it myself!" phase and one beginning the equally fascinating and exasperating "why?" and "what's that?" phase, "enough already" has the dangerous potential to become a new mantra. Mamas who are now beyond this stage remind me that I will miss it. Looking at life from afar, this period of curiosity and fierce independence is fascinating. It is beautiful to watch them discover new skills and begin to make sense of the world around them. Sadly, it seems they want to develop some of those skills as we are rushing out the door after yet another run to the bathroom. Deep breath. Not the end of the world. People will live if we are late.

We were fortunate to attend a retreat/gathering this weekend. As part of the weekend, one of the workshops really emphasized the importance of being present in the moment, not always looking ahead to what is next or holding on to what was. While we were talking about walking with people on their spiritual journeys, the whole concept hit home for me in terms of my vocation. I really loved what I did before I was married and had children. Until now, while I am so thankful for the blessings of marriage and motherhood, there was a part of me that subconsciously was still trying to live a little bit in that world. To be clear, it wasn't that I was holding on to the single life, but rather the different roles and activities I was involved in. I've always been a "do-er." I'm a forced extrovert, but a social butterfly. This new vocation has curbed those tendencies in a significant way.

While I was praying about needing to be more present and not just counting the minutes to naptime, which will be gone far too quickly, it hit me like a giant flash of lighting. "Enough already!!" No longer in an exasperated tone, but in a grateful spirit, enough already. I have enough already. What I have here and now is enough for me. I don't long for what I once had. While I look forward to the future, I don't sit and long for a different phase of life. What God has given me today is enough for me. What He is calling me to today is important and deserves my full attention. The role I have in mothering my children when I am home, in ministering when I am at work, in being dutiful and loving to my mother, in loving and supporting my husband - each of those moments in and of themselves is enough because they are all done for His glory, not mine. 

Sure, the moments of exasperated sighs will likely still escape my lips because, well, I'm an impatient work in progress. Yes, there will be times when I still wonder what else I might be called to do. However, I do hope that in reflection I will be faster to recognize the beauty of what I am called to do and who I am called to be in every present moment, to recognize the hand of God at work in that very moment and how He is leading me. I hope that I can appreciate the struggle in the "now" and not glamorize the memories of the past and the potential of the future. The past once led me to tears, and the future ... well, who knows if we have tomorrow at all? 

Carpe Diem, O Captain, My Captain!

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