No More Words, Please!

As I am watching all the pictures sweet friends are posting about their children's back to school days, this story I wrote many years ago about a day full of talking, talking, talking seems both far away and closeby--especially because our days still seem bound to be full of conversation.

Does anyone else ever feel like they just can't talk to one more person? Our philosophy of discipleship and of reaching our children's hearts in general is very relationship oriented--and that means lots of words!  I always feel I need to be available to my sweet children--but there are days when I'm not sure that's a great philosophy after all!

Before I had even finished a cup of tea or my quiet time that morning, I was on the phone with Nathan, who had just moved to California.  I also went back and forth on email with his agency in Denver, talking about resumes, head shots, movies and Youtube sample movies and auditions, sending information, talking bank accounts, money, recommendations, and was worn out by 9 a.m. Even from LA to Colorado, a mom is needed.

Then on driving to a history group meeting, Joy and I started a discussion that ended up lasting most of the day--- do you wonder how that sort of thing happens, when you really had good will in your heart, and it just gets turned around somehow? So we talked in the car for half an hour over some life issues before going into our meeting. Then at noon, we talked another thirty minutes about feelings and dreams and expectations. At 1:00 I met Joel for lunch as he was about to go back to Berklee, and we talked for an hour and a half about life, dreams, issues, money, school, work, housing, the Lord, food ...

Finally it was time to go back home where Joy and I talked for another hour and a half; she had a lot of "stuff" on her heart and it all seemed to bubble up that day. Sometimes I could see my kids felt lost in the crowd of the other children amidst everyone's  needs that are always vying for my attention in our home.  We are close friends and spent lots of time together every day, but sometimes with each child it takes a long time to get to the "ending well part" when you are in the midst of teen years and issues and friends and life.

Went to the kitchen to make dinner and was followed in by my oldest two, who proceeded to spend two more hours with me, talking about relationships with others in their lives and such, so more talking, more analyzing, and everyone, including Clay and me, having opinions. Thank goodness he got home from work so he could do half of the talking! As Clay says, if you ask a Clarkson a question, you will always end up with a discussion!

How long can you talk about an issue with your older children? Evidently, a very, very long time! Then we all went on a walk, and talked and argued even more about important issues like, "It's so hot tonight." "No, it isn't. It's cool. What's wrong with you." "I think you should be nicer to your friend." "I am being nice to my friend, you are just critical." "I love Mexican beans from this restaurant." "Really? I hate them. They are so mushy!"

Finally got home and sat down. I had spent all the words I had, all the compassion I had and all the energy I had and as much wisdom as I could muster--at which point, our golden retriever, Kelcy,  ran over the me and put both paws on my lap and seemed to say, "Now, it is my turn!" Joel and Joy rescued me as they could sense I was about to pop. At times, it seems like days like this tax you to your toes, and even now with 3 of my sweet ones home for just a bit, I am still amazed at how much I am in the center of everything and how much they all still want to talk--and talk! But, I now know that some days, my house is emptier when they are spread to the far corners of the world.  I will remember these days and I will miss the noise and conversations--I am enjoying it, really, at least most of the time.  But there are times when I am so thankful that a day has come to an end and I get to go to bed and sleep for a few hours without talking! Ever have days like this?