Please forgive me for the numerous unnecessary references to Stephen Colbert today. I don't watch his show with any frequency these days, because of those KIDS and their NEEDS, but I owe Mr. Colbert a lot. Because of him, I know about The Decemberists and Malcolm Gladwell.
Also, I cannot help but love a man who once put "Lutherans" on his "Dead to Me" List. (Although, since I am Lutheran, I suppose that I am technically dead to Stephen Colbert. Hmm. Must. Stop. This. Train. Of. Thought. Brain. Exploding.)
I'm continuing my "Better Know A Blogger" series aka "Ask Nancy Anything." Today, my question comes from Caution Flag (The Fightin' Flag!) Check out her blog and you'll leave happy and satisfied (That's what she said.)
OMG! Get out of my mind random pop culture references! FRACK!
As I was saying, Caution Flag asked me, "What do you do better than any other mother in your neighborhood?"
It's a tough question, because I spend most of my days in awe. I am surrounded by amazing mothers. My friend, Joanne, for example, is the most intuitive person I have ever met regarding kids and their boiling points. When our boys are playing, she'll catch the sweet spot, right before Happy Cooperative Play becomes Intense Torturous Misery, and redirect with food, new toys, or a change of scenery. It's stunning to watch.
Another friend, Dottie, is a former elementary school teacher, and she makes fun out of nothing. On rainy days like today, when my first instinct is to hand Owen the remote, Dottie is making dinosaurs out of empty milk jugs or going on puddle hunts. When I'm feeling lazy, I look around my house and ask myself, "How would Dottie make this fun?" Then, I do it.
My friend Trudy, who I see in person very rarely, also brings so much joy to life. She recently took her toddlers bowling, and posted the video online. The ball inched down the aisle, slowly. As in glacially slow. It almost stopped at several points. Her two children watched, bouncing up and down with excitement, running back and forth. They were totally in the moment, and enjoyed seeing the ball do its ungainly dance to the pins. And Trudy helped them see the magic in it all, that day and every day.
So, with role models like this, what do I do better than any other mom in my neighborhood? I guess I notice things, and I make them live on the pages of this blog. I am a writer.
I may not have a large audience or make any money by blogging, but when I sit down to write, I craft a story for my boys. If they ever want it, it's there. Day by day. Moment by moment. The glories and the frustrations, the silly stories and jaw-dropping grace.
I am changed, not only because I write the stories, but because I am present enough to gather the information.
Today, I rocked Joel in my arms. As he rested his head on my shoulder, I thought, "This-this-is the closest I'll get to holy today." I felt his warm body shift as he glanced towards his crib. I sniffed his little head, and kissed his forehead gently. Then, I laid him down, and walked downstairs. I turned on my computer, wrote a lot of nonsense about Stephen Colbert, and eventually blogged about him.
I would have felt the feeling regardless. But, because I am a writer, I'm was able to record this moment--this afternoon gift. God allowed me to see the wonder of His works in a fifteen month old boy. Someday, this same little boy will read it for himself, and know he was a deeply loved baby.
I don't know if I do this better than anybody else in my neighborhood---there are many mothers, many computers, and lots of holy moments to go around. I do know, though, that I do this and I do it well.
It sustains me and gives me infinite joy.