My heart sometimes aches at the memory of quiet independence. The Old Me, who could go for a 10 mile run, or read a novel at the drop of a hat. No accountability to anyone. My selfish heart misses anytime me-time.
My daughter catches my eye- she is as bright as the dawn, and bursts into song “Let it gooo…” Her smile is infectious. I crack up at the orange crumbs in her hair, brush them away and kiss her soft cheek. I recall that the Old Me used to yearn to have a family of her own. I dismiss that selfish ache and soak up the joy of the present.
I walk past the bathroom mirror. A part of me sighs as I see my reflection. Despite having already lost my baby weight, my body is different now. Hips are wider. Stomach softer. I’m no longer the model I used to be.
Suddenly, I glance down at my wedding ring and then to my sleeping babe in the swing. My heart swells with a love that gushes from my chest to my eyes, and tears of happiness run down my cheek. That self depreciating sigh is pushed into oblivion. After all, this is what the female body was designed to do. To be altered for life by the life We bring into the world. I begin to revel in that fact, and join my toddler as she dances to The Wheels On The Bus.
My colicky 3 week old starts to scream. Simultaneously, my taller-than-average toddler opens the fridge, and accidentally tips half a gallon of milk onto my gorgeous wood floor. Angry words are on the tip of my tongue- then I see my daughter squat down and start to lap the milk up like a cat. “Uho!” She exclaims. My anger is quelled by her child like purity. “Uho, oh well!” I laugh. And, I simply clean up the mess and get to quieting the din.
Parenting and marriage contain so many challenges. However, my faith and patience are deeper as a result. My heart is bigger. And, although sometimes I snap, and feel that I’m at the end of my rope, my rope is augmenting, bit by bit.. This family of mine are molding me into a stronger, better person. And that’s what this life is all about.