Yesterday, we were snowed in, AGAIN! April 29 and had almost a foot in some areas. There was no reason to go out in this storm. I purposed myself to do some hated jobs--cleaning and throwing out some areas that have needed attention for a long time.
But the delight in my day was that Nathan and Joy both unbeknownst to the other, face-timed me twice, for a long time. I am so grateful that since my children live far off, I can not only talk to them, but see their faces that are so precious to me. I am happy that my children are finding purpose in life and pursuing ideals. But I am also a mama who misses them so much on some days, I almost feel it physically. So, when I get lengthy conversations, face to face, and we talk about cute earrings, theology, movies, friends, struggles, a funny thing that happened, it fills my longing for time with them. Hanging up is harder for me than it is for them, but I don't let on because I want to fuel their energy to pursue their lives without any baggage from me. And I do work on keeping a thankful attitude to support all of them with what they decide as adults.
But there is a realization when you are older, that you can't take time back, or have do-overs.
But, I was reflecting on what I would do if I had it to do over again and how I would want to reframe the way I looked at my days. I would want to be sure they knew every day how much I loved them and how much more God loved them. I would want to be sure that they all really heard and experienced the messages my heart, that I wanted to imprint on theirs to store inside for when they would need to find wisdom, grace and strength..
I would stop in the midst of my chores to listen to a boy-joke being shared and I would laugh out-loud and tell them they were so much fun.
I would stop unloading the groceries when my husband is talking to me and look deeply into his eyes and listen to what he is saying, communicating with my whole self, "You are such a treasure to me. I want to know what you are thinking and feeling and dreaming."
I would take the moment to tossle a head as I am passing through a room and say, "I am so blessed to have you as my very own child. You make me so happy, just being you."
I would look into tearful girl eyes and show sympathy without even giving one word of advice.
I would sit down to build legos.
I would stop what I am doing, to go outside to look at a "treasure" when I hear, "Hey, Mama, come look!"--an apple blossom blooming on our very first apple tree or a worm on the grass or whatever had capture their curiosity.
I would camp more outside on our deck and cuddle up under the sleeping bags more often to marvel at the stars and the one who made them.
I would open my eyes to take a snapshot of today--just as it is--with boy noises, loud discussions, toys being played with intently, piano being practiced, thoughts being shared, messes coming and going..
Instead of giving advice when a child is opening their heart through tears, I would listen with a sorrowful, sympathetic heart and take seriously what they were feeling, instead of mentally planning that the clothes in the dryer need to be folded.
I would laugh more, worry less, lecture only on rare occasions, overlook messes instead of wasting my time being neurotic, notice the fingerprints of my maker in the moments of my days, and cherish those few years when we were all home, together, being the Clarksons and celebrating life.
I would choose to really look and notice all the beauty in my daily walks--to really see spring shouting its alleluia, instead of brooding or fretting about things that would soon pass.
So, this weekend, I will make one more cup of tea in front of our living room window and look at the sparkling snow remembering that each snowflake is a different design and a reflection of His detailed care.
I will engage my heart in storing up pictures of the precious ones still here. I will listen, love, wash dishes and mugs happily and live fully in the few moments remaining before this season flies quickly into another season, and I will never be able to live this day well again.
And I will email my far away kids an "I love you and miss you" note, to tell them how very much they mean to me, how I believe in them and in their futures--which do have a hope, and how blessed I am to have them as my very own.
What would you do?
Kristen and I are asking all our friends to come and get to know one another on instagram today. Would you like to join us? Follow our accounts @sally.clarkson and @kristenkill, and share about what you do to live a sustainable life using the hashtag #momheartmonday. You can meet other moms, share ideas with one another and with us by searching the hashtag today, and every Monday. We can't wait to meet you there!