Sundays are the hardest day of the week.
From the first light of day till the sun sets it is a constant battle to have the right spirit in our home on the Sabbath.
Getting ready for church is a long and tiring process- finding the right clothes; getting everyone dressed on time; the lines to get hair done and teeth brushed; finding matching socks and church shoes; packing a quiet bag for the Man Child that looks more like a goody bag for the Drive-In theater...oh, and trying to actually do my hair and makeup so that I don't look like the frumpy "given up" mom that I am the other 6 days of the week.
Yesterday was particularly bad. 10 minutes before we needed to leave, the MC grabbed the bottom of the iron that I had just used to run over my impossibly wrinkled shirt. Blisters appeared almost immediately. He stopped crying after only a few minutes but any cooperation he had given earlier in the morning was gone and would not be seen again till this morning.
The Tween Queen and Fox decided at almost the same moment as the iron incident to start bickering over anything and everything. Once they get started there's no stopping them. Thankfully they were separated for most of church, but they picked right up where they left off in the parking lot at 2:01.
Needless to say, by bedtime the King and I were DONE. If we could have run away we'd have been gone mid-afternoon.
Then I called my mom.
My mom is wonderful, amazing, beautiful, talented, and a spiritual giant. She always seems to know the right thing to say- to teach without preaching. My children adore her, and really, who wouldn't? She's the best.
Knowing full well that I really wouldn't go to such measures, I warned her that her grandchildren might be going up for sale if I had another Sunday like today. Having spent years and years battling 6 children through church, she could definitely empathise. But she gent;y reminded me what an incredible gift it is to be a mother, and how blessed I am to have 3 of Heavenly Father's choicest spirits in my home. To illustrate her point, Mom related a story she had heard in a talk earlier in the day.
A mother was sitting at the bedside of her terminally ill 10-year old son. Although it was very late and he was asleep, she did not want to leave his side for a moment.
Sometime during the night she heard his weak voice call out "Mom, Mom?"
Worried that he was in pain or needed assistance she quickly replied, "I'm here son. What do you need?"
Her sweet boy replied "Nothing Mom, I just wanted to know that you are here".
Those were the last words her son spoke to her.
What a simple yet powerful story. Just imagine how heartbroken this mother would have felt had she missed out on this time with her son because it was more important to do the laundry or dishes, or watch that show she'd recorded earlier. Moments like this, moments when we realize just how important we are to and how loved we are by our children, happen so quickly and quietly that often times we miss them.
I was humbled by the simple lesson taught in the story. I am blessed to have healthy, happy children that fill my life with a myriad of emotions: joy, sorrow, stress, gratitude, happiness, pain, and love.
Next Sunday, I am sure, will be another exercise in patience and tolerance. The MC will wiggle and squirm fro 3 straight hours, TQ will stress over what she's wearing and how her hair looks, and Fox, despite eight or ten reminders, will dally along and get dressed 5 minuted before we have to leave.
But at least we'll be together.