This flood, plus Pete's need to watch football today, naturally escalated into Aoife pouring coffee down my back, Pete creating smoke in the oven for the second day in a row, and a bowl of popcorn getting tipped and flown all over the kitchen. Before noon.
I'm writing this to remind myself to breathe. Most days have been like this lately. I wake up running and I don't really get a breath until Aoife goes down for a nap and then it's time to power clean or prep dinner. While standing near my kitchen windows in a pile of Aoife's lunch offerings rejected by the dog, I stopped long enough to notice and count the 18 eastern bluebirds in my front yard busily turning over leaves looking for treats brought out by last night's rain. That short 2 minutes brought a little calm to my shoulders. It helped keep me from screaming like my children have for the last month straight.
Living in chaos is not my favorite way to be. lately my family seems determined to turn our house into a disaster zone, added bonus if someone goes down screaming. Triple points if the focus of the war breaks, mom'll fix it. My life is chaos since all my time is focused on repairing everything around me with barely any time to breathe before the next meltdown or mealtime.
It may feel as though all i do is clean, repair toys and tend to injuries, but I know that's not true. Life and parenthood can seem overwhelming (and I know this seems like a lot of whining) but it is not the truth. The truth is I live with caring people who love life. They have big emotions and imaginations to match. Cleaning up after a fairy balloon ride over the mountains and through the woods of my living room is not on their radar. I do get help with fun chores like mopping and making vinegar volcanos in the bathroom sink and replacing puzzle piece 'cookies' on their baking sheets. I do get a few minutes to read real books when i ignore the state of my floors. And lately reading books with pages full of text is more appealing than the Internet, than dishes, than playing princesses, editing photos or journaling. Reading and gathering in, sitting quietly and absorbing knowledge is appropriate for these cold winter months.
Now if only my children would learn to read and we could spend hours each afternoon doing just that. It'll happen soon, or so they tell me. For now, I have to keep them from strangling each other as they fight over plastic beaded necklaces and clean up all the spilled food. It's a small moment in their lives, a small moment in mine, and how easy it is to get stuck in these small moments.
Today, I choose to get stuck in a small moment watching little birds splash in puddles and turn over leaves. What do you choose?