These days. This morning as I moved around the kitchen signing permission slips, filling cups, and pouring cereal into bowls (yes, we still do that here), followed by the typical chant to “get dressed,” I allowed myself to overhear some of the imaginative play happening between the two littles.
The youngest who was dashing back and forth between the living and dining rooms, delivering “chocolate” to her older brother.
And I smiled.
How did we get here? To these days.
I mean everything in my life (to this point) has felt fairly intentional. Premeditated, if you will. Planned from what courses filled my school schedule, where I attended college, and what I majored in, even who I dated and the many break-ups that followed. All requiring a much different sort of effort than what motherhood has required of me.
I’ve always been a perfectionist. This planner. I’ve never thrived at improv. But this motherhood gig, it’s stretched me. (I mean that to be taken in its most figurative form.)
Our first pregnancy wasn’t planned and that should’ve been my first inclination of what was to follow.
I stood there, pausing to watch the quiet dashing between rooms as they exchanged their imaginary chocolate and couldn’t quite completely piece together or recollect how we got here. To say these days between having babies to a toddler and preschooler occupying the house has been a whirlwind, wouldn’t be an exaggeration. But I felt joy, so much joy in this moment that I slowed down to embrace.
The months (years) of sleep-deprived nights, wiping bottoms, and tantrum soothing….. has all become a bit of a blur. I don’t remember everything I’ve done to get to this point. Some things worked, some haven’t. I can’t tell you what my most helpful resource was because I’m not sure that there is one.
But I can tell you that it’s been my greatest improv act to date. Which leaves me feeling a smidge proud. Not in an egotistical sense, just as something to come back to and remind myself of on the long days that sometimes end in tears of doubt. The silver lining in all the exhaustion and sacrifice. And I think you should, too.