Intentionally There

The other day, I got behind a mom at the store who was on her cell phone. Her son, probably three years old was trailing behind her chewing on a toy he’d just picked off the shelf. She had no idea as she droned on and on about how she was totally going to try this new child rearing method she’d just read about on this mommy blog she reads and how she would —

Well, I smiled to myself, your kids may not be perfect, but you’re doing a better job that THAT woman.

And then, I went home. I began working on all of the things that HAD to get done, all while my two children trailed me over every square inch of the house. I wasn’t even halfway through my mental chore list, when Emma started chanting, in her low monotone voice, “Mommy, Mommy, Mommy, Mommy, Mommy –“

“Yes?! What, what, what, what, what?!”

She looked at me for a second then managed a small, “I just want to be with you.”

Sigh. Clearly I’m not doing a better job than any other mother out there. Well, that stinks.

It’s easy, as a homemaker and a stay-at-home mom, to just assume that my children are getting me ALL the time. And they do get me ALL the time. But are they getting ALL of me?

I’m convicted, especially as I’m working on all that I’ve put off these years regarding my writing and publishing dreams, all that I GLADLY put off to get married and have children, that my priorities can get jumbled up. When I say that I’m going to only work on these things when my family doesn’t need me, I still manage to neglect some things that they need in the process. So, when I’ve spent all day on proposals and editing and working really hard, there are still dishes in the sink, clothes to be folded, and a house to clean. And more than that, there are children who need to be heard and seen and loved and treasured.

I don’t know where the balance is. But I’m learning that no matter what else I have going on, I need to be intentionally there when I find myself where God has placed me in this season. And if that means listening to a thirty minute convoluted story that my five year old insists on telling me in painstaking detail, then I need to be intentionally there. This time is a gift, and I don’t need to let it pass by because I had so many other things that were good but weren’t best.

Just a good reminder to me today…

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