Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Medicine

First off, I have to make a comment. If you are one of those people who likes to do crazy things just for the challenge of it, I have the next adventure for your to-do list. It requires the skills of an Olympian, the perseverance to run the Boston Marathon, and the courage to climb Mt. Everest. Not to mention the faith of a skydiver.

Here it is: get in a minivan, and then go try and park between any two of the fleet of SUVs packed into the ridiculously tight parking spaces at First Baptist Church on a Beth Moore Tuesday night. If you succeed, you will indeed experience the thrill of VICTORY.

Not a good mommy day. Not. A. Good. Mommy. Day. We are on Day Nine of someone in this house having the sniffling/sneezing/coughing/aching/fever/whiney/cranky/bratty/tantrum throwing crud, including myself.

And I'm done. DONE. I'm so over it. Any Florence Nightingale that existed in me has hightailed it to a sterile Sandals in the Bahamas. There is no patient, loving, feed-the-poor and tend-the-sick mommy left.

So today when Shep's fever meant one more day of canceled plans, and one more day of kids complaining about canceled plans, I was grouchy. Just plain mean. Squeeze a little PMS on this crab salad and there was no turning back.

Walker called from his waste of a day of jury duty. "How you doing?" "Bad." I answer. Because he doesn't have enough to worry about what with his breadwinner-y duties and all. I didn't care. "I just want to run away. I do NOT want to be a mother today."

I didn't pray to God to help me be nicer because you know what? I didn't even want to be nicer. I wanted to be all by myself, to lie on my couch and watch my Judge Judy and not have to referee any fights or dole out any Motrin or wipe any poop from any heinies.

I was surviving until noon when I thought I might get to do that. All four kids down, except Eva Rose. For two hours we fought over her napping. Why oh why would she not lie still and let the Benadryl take effect?? Finally she did and it did. Four kids down. DVR on. I had won.

Except, of course, for the guilt that then began to wash over me, for not playing Candyland or planting flowers, for yelling and fussing and spanking and threatening. For being a mean mommy and a whiney wife.

So my longed for rest time turned into a recap of my shame.

Eva Rose woke up, came up to me in the kitchen. "I love you Mommy. You're the bestest mommy in the whoooooole world."

Me? The one who griped at her all morning? How can she even say that?

I hugged her back, this precious, beautiful, strong willed child, and said, "I'm sorry I was grouchy today."

"Oh, when you yelled at me? I forgive you Mommy. I love you soooooo much. You look so beautiful today."

Oh, my God, this love, how can it be?

Tonight I did not want at all to go to Beth Moore, which is precisely why I went. The very last song they sang before her teaching is one that I can never really sing, because it is one on a list of songs that chokes me up every time. I just mouth the words, and try not to cry.

I love you Lord
and I lift my voice to worship you,
Oh my soul, rejoice
Take joy, my King
In what you hear
May it be a sweet, sweet sound in your ear.

And I think, how on earth can my whispered voice, the song of a selfish giver, an ungrateful taker - how on earth can my voice be sweet to his ear right now? How?

And yet I know, amazingly that it is. Because he loves me, forgives me, and thinks I'm beautiful. Even today.

Oh, my God, this love, how can it be?


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