One day I will not be able to reenact the smell of mosquito repellent and grass clippings from my little son’s clothes. Or waking up to the sound of their little toes crunching the carpet floor. These are the thoughts that overwhelm my senses while I daily sort out the dirty from clean pile of clothes strung like a board game throughout the house. One day they will be men.
Sometimes I forget that my biggest dream, the thing I longed to be as a child is happening before my very eyes, every moment of each day. Motherhood. When others asked what I wanted to be when I grew up, my answer was always a mother. And here I am. Drenched in parenthood. Up to my knees in reading lessons, snack plates, resounding “whys”-and covered in the grace that I know that I am equipped with all that I need to love them, to teach them, to guide them to be who they were designed to be.
In this culture of cram. Of endless to do lists, bills that need to be paid, I choose to look up and see this. My handsome sons waiting to be read to. To be filled with wonder and ideas. To laugh with, to dry their tears.
William Ross Wallace wrote in his 1865 poem, “What Rules the World:”
They say that man is mighty,
He governs land and sea;
He wields a mighty scepter
O’er lesser powers that be;
And the hand that rocks the cradle
Is the hand that rules the world.
So I will say yes to them when they ask to crack those eggs, even it makes breakfast 30 minutes late. It doesn’t matter.
I will say yes when they ask if we can play football outside, even if I am freezing my buns off. It doesn’t matter.
I will say yes when they ask to play rock, paper, scissors a million times even when it’s past their bed time. It doesn’t matter.
What matters is that at the end of the day, I know my sons are loved, listened to, appreciated. It is not about being a supermom and flying off in my little awesome cape so I can pat myself on my back. It is about realizing that when I invest in my children, I am giving back to community. I am pleasing my Papa God. My sons will one day love a woman. Be a friend to many. Help someone in need. When I love them, I love others.
It is time to lay down that supermom cape. That relentless feeding of self, where I sit and worry if I am doing a good job. I am not perfect. I make mistakes. I answer them in the wrong way. I lock myself in the bathroom so I can have a few minutes of quiet time.
Perfection is not the point but the process of motherhood. In developing character, in accepting and offering forgiveness. My house will not look like my favorite pinterest board. There will surely be rough days of working out battles between brothers. But the atmosphere of home that I create is what matters. A place where my sons will know that grace and love abound.