Yesterday, I could feel myself getting caught up in life’s whirlwind. You know, that feeling you’re in the midst of this haze and when you finally look up from your stupor, you can’t tell north from south. You look behind you and wonder how you got to this point, then you look ahead of you and wonder how you’re ever going to get to where you need to be.
But in many ways, yesterday wasn’t much different than any other day. During Beau’s morning nap, I furiously tried to figure out how to combine the boys’ clothes in the closet in James Michael’s room, which they will share once Scarlett arrives, if not before. I pulled out all of JM’s winter clothes from last year so that they’d be ready for Beau this winter. I stuffed the dresser with what I could and put the rest on little hangers.
After checking this organizational task off my list, I headed to open up the gym for the 11 a.m. class while James graciously watched the boys. It was a good workout–burpee box jumps are getting harder and you can only imagine the type of pressure jumping rope with a growing bump puts on my bladder. But I squeezed in a good WOD and finished earlier than expected, so I made a pit stop by a nearby consignment store and scored JM a long sleeve shirt and cotton puff vest for fall.
Then I made a quick trip to Publix to stock up on milk because we can’t seem to keep enough in stock, and before I know it I was home by lunchtime and welcomed by the Rowdy boys. Even though I’d love to get them down for naps by 1 p.m., they have this knack for getting each other riled up right after lunch, chasing after and crashing into one another on their musical cars. So naps have begun closer to 1:30 p.m. as of late.
After putting them down for naps, I managed to make me and James salads for lunch (well, his was for his second lunch), completed my bible study and then indulged in a much-needed shower. Soon after, Beau was up from his nap and it was full steam ahead for the afternoon.
We had to wake JM up from his nap around 4:30 p.m. (meaning Beau runs into his room screaming and waving his hands before maniacally climbing upon his twin bed), and after that we headed out on a stroller walk to the neighborhood park to play. Only I realized the recent cold temps did little to stave off the mosquito population. So after about 20 minutes of getting eaten alive, we surrendered and headed back home so that JM could ride his ATV up and down the street, staying one step ahead of the mosquitoes while narrowly missing several mailboxes.
By the time we came back inside, it was 6 p.m. and I knew I needed to start dinner. I had chosen to make a new recipe (21 DSD Meatloaf), and was hoping to knock it out during naptime, but things didn’t work out that way today; I ran out of time. The recipe indicated only 25 minutes of prep time, then about 50 minutes cook time.
So I mistakenly thought a little prep with the boys underfoot would be no problem and I’d have dinner popped in the oven in no time. I let the boys loose downstairs to play and entertain themselves. Only, you can imagine how this turned out. As soon as Beau saw I was busy grating carrots and dicing onion, he forgot about playing and was all about climbing up Mama’s legs, banging on my tummy and somehow, in the process, halfway pulling down my shorts from the incessant clinging. At the same time, JM began requesting his morning vitamin countless times then wanted his milk cup and soon demanded his milk cup be refilled. All the while, I’m trying to temporarily block out the Rowdy boys distractions and grate and chop as fast as I can without slicing my fingers.
Fifty minutes later (twice the time it should take to prep), I was roughly halfway through prepping dinner, had read through the rather simple recipe 10 times but still couldn’t comprehend it with the surrounding chaos, noted the kitchen was a complete and utter mess and realized Beau had thrown half the contents from his dinner onto the floor in an attempt to convey his unhappiness (or maybe it was just for fun, who knows). I took Beau out of his high chair and stuck in his paci, then asked JM to play with him and give me JUST 5 MINUTES to finish making dinner. I’m sure the look on my face and the waver of my voice reeked complete desperation.
Then, out of the blue, we heard the familiar muffler that can only mean one thing: Daddy is on his way home (on his motorcyle). JM screamed for joy and shouted Daddy Daddy Daddy Daddy repeatedly. Beau basically ran in circles and followed JM around the house. I was thinking to myself that surely this couldn’t be James, but some other random biker driving through our neighborhood at 7 p.m., because after all, he’s not due home for another 1.5 hours.
But, low and behold, it was Daddy and the boys immediately tackled him when he walked in the front door. I think he took one look at my face and the state of the kitchen and decided it’d be best if he took the boys outside for a while, no questions asked.
So during the 30 minutes they sauntered around our front and back yards, I turned on Pandora to a worship station to try to unwind for a bit and reset my attitude. Meanwhile, I finished prepping dinner and popped it in the oven, unloaded the dishwasher, cleaned up the kitchen and picked up the playroom and living room.
At one point I looked outside on our back deck and my heart melted as I saw the boys completely giddy chasing bubbles. And then I realized that this is what life is all about. It doesn’t matter that the boys went to bed late and dirty, without time for baths. It doesn’t matter that I wiped them down as best I could with baby wipes before bed. It doesn’t matter that JM was probably the only kid in his class today with pieces of dirt in his hair. It doesn’t matter that they stayed up later than normal.
What matters is that they got extra time with Daddy just being boys.
What matters is that JM got to sit down and eat dinner with us, something that only happens on the weekends because of James’ schedule.
What matters is that we took the time to patiently answer his never-ending questions about where crickets live and what they eat.
What matters is that Mama and Daddy were both there to high-five him after going potty.
What matters is the beaming smile on his face when both his parents tucked him into bed, because in his little mind, he had the best day ever.
I hope my boys will reminisce about their childhood one day with fondness. I hope they won’t remember the Mama who tried too hard to do too much, but instead the Mama who was patient and kind and loving. I hope they won’t remember the Daddy with the crazy schedule, but instead all the special moments they got to spend with him being silly, dirty boys. I hope they won’t remember all the times they got in trouble or were told no, but instead the parents who disciplined them because they loved them. I hope they won’t remember how we never took expensive vacations or were conservative with the little we have, but instead respect the decision their parents made to have Mama stay at home.
One day, when my Rowdy boys grow up to become men, I hope they remember that a happy home is made of love and togetherness.