When life gives you chaos...take a moment and be grateful
Do you ever have one of those days where you feel like the sun is constantly beaming your direction, wind pushing your hair out of your face, and you just can't stop smiling because the day's events have just made you feel super grateful?
Today was one of those days. I guess you could say the stars must have been in alignment because it was as if everything was going just as it should be, despite the way the chaos was taking us.
It started with a walk in my favorite area, where the hills are Irish green, wildflowers blooming away, cattle scattered throughout, and turkeys fanning themselves in hopes of finding a special mate. I should have known it's the first day of spring! My daughter being the huge horse fan that she is was deeply hoping to get to pet 2 of her new favorites, Dazzle and Boon. We could see the horse owner standing in the barn having a conversation, but I didn't want to trouble her. As Amara's tears started to roll down her cheeks more and more, and the words "you don't understand Mom, I need to do this" kept being said, I just couldn't let my people pleasing self win this time. "Ok, let's just tell her we are here to bring a few carrots for them," I told Amara as we headed back towards the barn.
The horse owner (I really need to ask her for her name again) saw Amara and came out with Dazzle to greet us. She knew what Amara was wanting and bless her heart for being so patient with us. Amara asked if she could practice leading with the rope and also take Dazzle out to the pasture. Her dream came true today as she was able to practice leading several times back and forth, stopping to be sure the horse was in tune with her, and then take her out through the gate to be free in the field. Quite the task for a four year old!
As I watched I couldn't help but think, had she not had a tantrum, had I just put my mom boss foot down, we wouldn't have gotten to do all that. I am sure any child psychologist or parent coach would tell me I need to loosen the reigns a bit on my parenting, but when emotional meltdowns happen on the regular, and the generator side of me just wants to keep all happy, routine tends to be my friend. Today, I just knew she needed this. And to see her quiet herself, calm down, and take charge with the rope, it just made me feel so thankful. To then hear that they want to get a saddle to keep at the barn for Amara's size, I knew today is something special.
Later as we baked some cupcakes in the kitchen, I had another moment of pure bliss with my 2 kiddos. It was after dinner, usually when I want to get the kitchen all cleaned up before bedtime so that I am not banging pots and pans as the littles are starting to quiet down. Today I wanted to start a batch of cupcakes for a dear friend arriving tomorrow. Armaan was having a hard time without me being able to hold him. Amara wanted to be a part of the baking fun, which means my patience has to be in just the right place. I could see that tonight would be tricky because if Armaan isn't wanting to do his own activities, it means I am going to bake with 1 hand while I direct Amara on how to do things and hold Armaan with my other arm. So there we were, all three of us...counting and cracking eggs together, mixing, measuring, and pouring batter. Lord love my husband, but he was completely tuned out with his airpods in and sitting comfortably in a cozy armchair. Lucky duck!
In the midst of eggshells landing in the bowl, the whites splattering all over the kitchen counter, I just felt another tingle in my toes as I almost had this out of body experience where I saw this ridiculous baking extravaganza, yet I still was elated about the opportunity to be in my favorite part of the house with my 2 lovebugs. I knew there would be a heck of a mess to clean up tonight, but that didn't matter. Moments like these are not always going to come, so I am just going to take it.
The last grateful experience of the day happened during bath time. As we get closer to bed, sometimes that means the emotions and energy tend to go haywire. Amara was upset about losing a privilege due to not listening right before bath, which led to some quiet time in her room to think. As we climbed in the tub, she was still upset because we talked about why the privilege was lost. When Armaan heard her start to cry, he started crying. It was as if he had no clue why everyone else was crying, but he knew Amara wasn't happy, so maybe he better join in. So there I was looking down in the tub at. both kiddos, them looking back at me eyes squinted, tears rolling down, sobs getting louder and louder between glances at each other.
Many parents would just want to pull their hair out when both kids are crying, but I had to chuckle a little because I knew there was nothing majorly wrong. 1 is tired and really needs to be in bed and the other has no clue, just wants to be a part of the group. How did I get so lucky to have 2 wonderful babes who care so much about each other, even when it looks like there are moments they don't get along. When tiffs happen, it's just so interesting to see them go from anger to "Ok, I will share this with you" within a matter of seconds. When one gets hurt and hard tears are coming, the other comes over as quick as they can to see if the other is ok. So in the chaos of bath-time cries, I took a moment to just say "thank you" to whomever else was listening.
I guess the saying goes, "When life gives you lemons, make lemonade" and I never was one to really follow that phrase. Today it brings new meaning because sometimes, especially as a mom in the thick of it, we have to stop and smell the roses as we get them. We aren't always going to mentally be in the right place to smile at emotional breakdowns or laugh when we have an extra mess to clean up, but when we can, I think it's important to soak those moments up. I know as the seasons change, so will the kiddos. I pray that they will always want to join in the kitchen fun, shout out for what they need to do, and cry empathy tears for one another. That's what I've always prayed for and I am so THANKFUL someone chose me to take on this role. Even in the midst of chaos, I couldn't be more grateful!