...life goes on brah
La la how the life goes on
- The Beatles
Beauty and order give my soul rest. I want my home to be beautiful and orderly. I want my body to be beautiful and orderly. I have a sense of rest when I have that, but this occurs maybe a good 2% of the time. The other 98% of the time (aka reality) I have to come down to earth and face facts. My house is not going to be beautiful because it takes time and effort that I don't have in me. My house is not going to be orderly because I have four children and a messy husband, and again, it takes time and effort that I don't have. My body is not going to be beautiful because...well, maybe someday? But then again there's that time and effort thing...I cannot manufacture this - after years of trying, it just doesn't work!
I have not sat down to write in such a long time, but I have been mulling over how to bridge the gap for a while now. Recent online articles about parenting were just the catalyst I think I needed. When I started writing this blog my life was in a completely different place. I was an at-home mom with two small children, just beginning to embark on a homeschooling adventure. For all those years I was just trying to work it all out - find out what works, what doesn't work, desperately trying to find out how much different our lives were from everyone else's while at the same time needing to know we were all the same. Everything was still out there, somewhere in the future, and I was trying to navigate how to best arrive at that place. Because at that point pretty much the only thing that was in the past was my own childhood.
Those first two small children? They have more than half their own childhoods behind them now. And I still have two smallish children, but I also have two older children, and in a couple weeks we will be starting the teenage years. All homeschooling ceased almost two years ago, and as of next year I will have four school-aged children. I now do at-home work as well as outside-home work, not as a patchwork, whatever-gets-us-by basis, but a real and true job that is a source of income. It is not anywhere near what I went to school to do. But it pays well, is super flexible, and I am too tired to care. So nowadays about the only difference between my family and other families is that not very many of them have four kids. But I am no longer interested in bucking the system and fighting the good fight. Mommy Wars? No thanks; I'm tired and only interested in getting through the day in whatever way works.
Diapers, sleep schedules, nursing, and fatigue from waking up with babies has given way to middle school drama, activity schedules, quick meals on the run, and fatigue from getting up at dawn to go to work. But it's great, it really is. Because I'm beginning to have clarity now, that this IS it. This IS the future. What was out there before, is now. Sure, things will change a hundred times between now and when I am gone, but right now is the time that everything else will be measured by. Our family is solid and secure and these are the years that all six of us will now remember for the rest of our lives as the "remember when?" years.
It's most certainly not going to be the "remember when our home was beautiful and orderly?" years. It will definitely not be the "remember when mom was young and beautiful and not fat?" years. But I guess it will be the "remember when mom and dad always made us go out and enjoy nature on their days off?" years. And the "remember when we all built those blanket forts?" years. The "remember when we all danced after Uncle Scott's funeral?" years, as well as the "remember when the power went out and we played card games by candlelight?" years.
So it might not be beautiful from the outside, but I hope that if I pay more attention to the type of beauty that is going to last in our memories, those will suffice to give my soul rest instead.