Friday, January 25, 2008

A Good Reminder

I have been trying to accomplish things today. So, I let my kids play somewhat unsupervised. They in turn make messes and I get upset. During their quiet time today, I read the following quote from Rattled, Surviving your Baby's First Year Without Losing your Cool by Trish Berg. It struck a chord and was a reminder I needed.

On one particularly busy day, I was trying to get supper prepared, and I practically pierced my big toe on a Polly Pocket doll. I was already grumpy--I'd had little sleep the night before because baby Riley decided to throw an all-night slumber party. As pain shot through my foot, I shouted at Sydney, "Pick up your things and put them away!"

Sydney looked up at me with tears in her big blue eyes. "Mommy," she whimpered, "I was waiting for you to play with me."

Bam. Shot fired. Direct hit to my heart.

I sank down onto the cold kitchen linoleum and suddenly realized how selfish I had been that day. I hadn't spent a single minute playing with Sydney. I was checking off my to-do list in battle mode, fighting alien interference with my agenda. In the blink of an eye, I suddenly understood how this was affecting my daughter.

I held out my arms, and Sydney crawled up into my lap to snuggle. She put her skinny arms around my neck, squeezed as tightly as she could, and cried. "I'm sorry, Mommy. I'll pick them up."

Bam. Second shot fired. Now the guilt was sinking in.

So I did what any alien mom would do. I took a deep breath, closed my eyes, and held on tight. Sydney whispered, "Mommy, will you play Polly with me?"

My heart melted. I had been running so fast, keeping up such a pace, t hat I had forgotten who I was. I may be a neatnik at heart, but God made me a mom.

In that moment, I let go of my agenda. Cleaning the house was not as important as spending time with Sydney. I hugged her tight and told her I loved her. Then we sat in the middle of the kitchen and played Polly Pocket."


Holly said...

I'm always shocked at how little my now-grown kids remember about the mess our house always seemed to be. What they often talk about are the times we talked together, or had projects together (usually work disguised as fun!) or the times their dad and I paid attention to them - although at times it seemed to me as if their names were written at the top of my to-do list in disappearing ink. I'm touched at how much the times I did pay attention still mean to them.

megs @ whadusay said...

Thanks Holly - that is very encouraging!

Jami said...

I read this yesterday and it really hit home... I just couldn't post at the time...probably because my kids were crying! :)

Holly - very good words. That does make me feel encouraged as well!

Kristy said...

Oh, my heart is melting. I get so convicted about this. Sometimes being at home all day I take my kids for granted.... how many times do I constantly pass up this precious time to get things done! I have a friend who works full-time but when she's at home is extremely focused on playing with her kids. Seeing her commitment to spending quality time is a great lesson for me who has the extra blessing of having quantities too. What a great reminder.

Heidi said...

wow....:) something I've been thinking alot about lately. Just taking the time to "PLAY"....something I do love to do way more than housework! Very true how down the road THAT is what our children WILL REMEMBER!