A few weeks ago I introduced our summer schedule to the children, who responded with great cheering and exhuberant joy.
Deflated I thought, is this going to work? Am I going to have to push and pull all summer to get chores finished, help them serve someone for a “Daily Dose”, and do their educational “Power Hour”? It seemed more work than it was worth.
But then, a few mornings ago I experienced something very tender.
Dealing with sleepless nights from sick children and preparing for various kids’ camps, I awoke exhausted and already wishing for a rare nap. Starting my early day, I read through emails and found more people in my circle of friends or stewardship who needed love, support or help. And then the children woke up, began bouncing off the walls and began repeatedly asking when we were doing the day’s fun activity/going to the park/doing a craft.
Sometimes when moms get to this point of “doneness,” we either bark at our kids or put on a smile and move on. This time I decided to tell them like it was. In a normal, tired voice I simply said how I felt, that I was overwhelmed and needed their help.
I hadn't even finished sharing my thoughts when my 10-year-old walked to my desk, got my lotion and starting rubbing my feet. My other daughter started rubbing down my calves. Both asked what they could do to help and then decided to make me breakfast. My youngest grabbed a notepad and acting like a waitress as she took my "breakfast order". Within minutes I had overeasy eggs, with toast, and “orange jam” (marmalade), and scrambled eggs to feed the baby.
Afterward they tucked me into bed and in the most beautiful of timing, my baby was now ready for his nap. I made a bottle, cuddled next to him and felt the healing power of being with him in cozy peace while knowing my kids were playing quietly (okay, assumed but we'll go with it).
Throughout this experience I told them how much I loved and appreciated them, and what a gift they had given me. My 10-year-old said, "It's our Daily Dose, Mom."
Shazam. The summer schedule was working.