Thursday, January 26, 2012

gratitude

Every morning I awaken with my baby, and the feeling that I have been run over by a truck.  At least, I think I might feel the same if I was ever run over by a truck.  Instead, I have been awoken too many times through the night by a baby who has not yet learned that Mommy is nicer when she gets more sleep.  It takes every ounce of energy I have to open my eyes and drag myself out of bed.  And I wonder, will I make it through the day feeling this exhausted?  But every day, God give me the strength I need.  Once I am up (and have had that first cup of coffee) I actually feel pretty good.
For this I am grateful.


I have a 3-year-old.  She is going through a demanding phase.  I imagine I am not the only mom who wants to shout, Are you kidding me, Child?!?  I have devoted my entire day to entertaining you, picking up after you, feeding you, cleaning you, singing to you, reading to you, and driving you around!  I have given up my entire previous life of independence to care for you!!  And YOU are complaining about way I cut up your hot dog?!!  But I don't.  Instead I feel a deep compassion and love for this selfish child who God has entrusted to my care.  I am given patience where I had none.  Gentle words replace ugly ones. It is a genuine mothering miracle.
For this I am grateful.


My time is not my own.  It takes most of the morning to get myself dressed, let alone tidy up the breakfast dishes.  Entropy catches up to me quickly.  The children are incessant.  I can never quite recount what I have done between the hours of 7am and 11am, but I believe the time has vanished into filling the minor needs of my girls - making animals talk, changing a diaper, pulling out toys, feeding someone.  The day proceeds like this.  There is a point in the afternoon, far too brief but existent none-the-same, when both girls are napping (or at least quiet in their rooms.)  I sink into the couch, open my Bible, check email, or simply stare into empty space.  A tiny sliver of peace in a world of chaos.  The moment refreshes me.
For this I am grateful.


I am describing small, daily miracles.  Except that they are not small.  They are stuff life is made out of.  God gives us incredible strength to do what He asks us to do, to be who He asks us to be, to love how He asks us to love.
For this I am grateful.


In the new year I am making a conscious effort to practice the discipline of gratitude.  It is not a question of what I have to be grateful for, but whether I choose to see it.


This post is a follow up from my last post.

2 comments:

  1. I love that...it's not whether or not you have something to be grateful for, but whether or not you are! Yes, my friend! Those girls are absolutely adorable. Thanks for sharing!

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  2. I'm grateful for you, Ashley, for reminding me not to get bogged down in the snot, poop, and whining, but to remember to be grateful for these (snotty, poopy, and whiny) gifts from God. :)
    Love, Allison

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