I consider myself to be a fairly reflective person. I am constantly examining my life in order to root out my faults and weaknesses and see how I can keep moving forward on my journey towards becoming the type of wife and mom God wants me to be. Part of my reflections come from looking at the lives of others - including their triumphs and mistakes. I love learning from those gone before me - those on the other side of child-rearing - to see their take on their many years raising a family. And I notice there is a common thread that runs through their comments: most of them wish they spent less time worrying about their home or their schedules and more time playing and laughing and enjoying their families.
Sure, our home has an order, a schedule. Everyone (especially mama) thrives best when there are clear expectations that everyone's basic needs will be met: sleep, food, prayer. But more and more I am attempting to look beyond the things that demand my attention (those darn dishes) and look closer at the little people in front of me. I hear more often than not that "don't worry, honey. there will always be laundry but your kids will not always be little." I want to embrace this statement, especially during these hard years of having little ones that demand lots of time. I want to be able to sit on the front porch with my husband, walkers in tow, and look back on our lives knowing we have no regrets. I don't want to end up 80 and looking back on my life wishing I spent more time doing the things that really matter: tickling, laughing, running in the sprinklers (OK, maybe not this one), and snuggling with my children.
So, I take you now to the current focus of my days...
Important things like housework and bill paying do get accomplished, however I am finding it easier to forgo less essential things in order to absorb every moment I can with my family. I am learning that dishes in the sink are OK as long as I'm bouncing my boy on my lap and listening to him squeal in delight. I am learning to love having the TV off in the evenings in order to enjoy a board game with my hubby. And I am learning to take nap time (aka: mama time) and use it not just for straightening the house but also for time with the Lord. The funny thing is that, even though my home (a great source of my joy) is not perfect, my soul is more at peace because I know that I am putting at the top of my list the things that matter the most.
I pray that God will continue to set before me the ability to put my husband and children at the top of my priority list. For this is where they belong. And if I keep them up there, I will truly have no regrets.