I was a good mom today. I didn't yell a lot or get too frustrated. I didn't really say anything I regret saying. I didn't get upset with any circumstances and take it out on one of my children. None of them had naps because we were too busy having fun-- and that was okay too. I didn't get bitter or spend a lot of time thinking about what I could be doing if only they were napping.
One key thing that made all this possible is that we went to our neighborhood pool. Now, with a toddler that usually just sounds like too big a nightmare to even attempt. But today my son asked (as he does most every day) if we could go to the pool and I thought, "Why not?" And it was like God might as well have tapped me on the shoulder and said, "That is a good idea. You need to take your kids to the pool." There may be a lot I still have to learn about the Christian life, but I know enough to listen to that still small voice telling me to do something! I am learning to listen and obey whenever I get that distinct impression on my heart that God is talking to me. At first I thought that perhaps God had a divine appointment for me at the pool-- like I was going to get to witness to someone or something. Now, as the kids are tucked in bed and I am reflecting on our day, I realize that I did have a divine appointment with my very own children.
I needed to get out of the house, away from the chores and projects calling out to me. I needed to jump in the water and race my daughter to see who could go the farthest without taking a breath and shoot my five year old with a water gun and hold out my arms to my toddler as she jumped into my arms over and over again. I needed to laugh with my children and be a kid with them. That is something I don't do enough. Later on we went to the library and tonight we even read books before bed instead of me just grumpily ordering them to bed. Ironically, spending time with my kids makes me want to spend more time with my kids.
I have said many times that I am a better mom when I am immersed in my children. Some would disagree with this, but this is what I have found in my own personal life.
Remember my post earlier about peace week? God must have read that and decided that today, in all His mercy, He was going to show me a different kind of peace-- one that comes from knowing you loved your children well. One that doesn't involve spending a lot of money or checking off a to do list or hiring a sitter. A peace that is unexpected, yet deeply satisfying to this mother's soul.