Thursday, May 16, 2013

The Mess

"A two year old is kind of like having a blender, but you don't have a top for it."  -Jerry Seinfeld

This is Ian's last month being a two year old.  The last weeks.  I know that it will not change him overnight but the changes will happen as quietly as the sun slips into the horizon each evening.  The phrases he picks, the way he talks to me.  He says each word as if a mini hurricane is propelling the syllables out one by one.  He is left breathless after a story told.  When he is done, eyebrows up, he is watching to see if I understand.  Watching to see if my eyebrows will go up too, repeating the story.  

When we have had a full day, after friends and family have shared life with us, the sun sinks and Ian clings near to me.  He holds his face close to mine and says, "mommy don't share Ian now."  I love that.  I love that there are moments that I don't have to share him.  No school bus to catch, or friends that are more exciting.  But the days are short.  I don't want to waste the days cleaning and prepping for the smooth running moments and miss the messy ones.  The messy ones where the kitchen is undone from making muffins and the floor is smudged with mud. Three sets of feet now run barefoot in the backyard.  Screeching  when they find a frog or toad.  Bringing it close to me as if it was a bundle of daffodils.  The mud smeared onto his cheeks and small hands proof that catching the frog was no easy feat.  And the mess mingles in with the joy, the wearing out and the giving.

The truth is, what overwhelms me about life is also the vehicle in which the most joy flows.  The mess of it.  I am constantly putting back into order what has been scattered in a day.  It would be easy to demand order.  It would be easy to keep shoes tied tight, the hose off, and frogs in the woods.  The house would look much better.  I would look less weary by seven o'clock.  But the joy would trickle out instead of gush. The bone tired exhaustion of some days are also the same days saturated in joy. The mess and joy cannot be separated in life.  And the magazine pictures that show it all clean and pristine, also show frozen smiles for a camera crew.  So, I will try to remember tomorrow, as I scrub the mud from the floor and find the two year old tracker of the mud at the sink, that these moments are sweet.  That very soon the days of scrubbing will turn into days of remembering.  

I hope you get to smile at a mess today.  That the mess will be a reminder of blessing.  And that we can all stop looking for the blender top for a moment.

"Every good gift and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows."  James 1:17