Outside the leaves are shimmering in the gentle breeze that started off the day so cool, not like the August of my youth. The August where summers were slick with sunscreen and sprinkled with sweetness of home made ice cream and the squish of river mud between my toes. Here the summer is cool, like a glass of iced tea fresh from the refrigerator and tinkling with ice. But the monsters don’t mind. Outside the two middle ones are running with peanut butter kissed cheeks and jelly sticky hands, jumping on the trampoline and colliding with each other and each day getting older in a way that will one day lead to curfews and tassels. Out there is one girl, experimenting with makeup and fashion, on the cusp of leaving childhood behind with her size 4 shoes and Hannah Montana blanket. She thinks she is ready, and only a mamma knows how ready she isn’t, with held breath anticipation of that first heart break, and that pain that only comes with the bitter betrayal of teenage friends.
Inside, the table is cluttered with bills and burp rags, paper plates, camo and baby toys, the simple sent of pink lotion wafting through the house like spring time roses: full of possibility and laced with innocence. His blue eyes shine at me as he learns to smile and experiment with his voice, calling to me and pulling on heart strings I didn’t know existed. There is a changing table in the next room, one that I thought would never make it’s way into my existence. The rocking chair in the living room has moved from a pedestal of want to a useful item in this chaos of motherhood and parenting. A chaos I thought had slipped from my fingers and would never come to fruition.
And though it has become real, this dream so long imagined, it has not come without a price. There is a pain in knowing that the only reason I am a mother is due to the break of a bond before me. There is a terror in not knowing what my children have seen or heard or been privy too, long before I knew their names.
I am not a “Praise Jesus” girl. I don’t shout affirmation of my faith on the mountaintops or end every conversation with a statement of belief. My spirituality comes through in my writing, in the raw emotion and beat down haggardness that comes from daily life, but I do not often give an audible voice to this aspect of my life. My prayers are private, my conversations with my Maker a ribbon of trust between us and I will become defensive if that relationship is challenged. But this week I cried out. This week my voice was loud as I prayed over the blessings that have come into my house and the battles that they and we face on a daily basis. I called down the healing power of above, to curb the wounds of a past wrought with lies and manipulation and cast out the doubt of our love, and I pray for a peace to settle on these creaky floorboards of my heart.
So today, as I look out on the summer sun and the sprinkler drops dripping from eyelashes, I give thanks. Today as I watch that temptation of adulthood hide on the sidelines of the hose and a water fight, I give thanks. Because today, today in this land of cold summers and a seemingly endless season of rain, there is a fragile layer of that calming peace. Today is just summer, and that’s all this mamma’s heart needs.
Today I’m counting my blessings and linking up with Ann Vonskamp.