My days are patchworked together much like the quilts we use for summer picnics. A moment for writing here, a minute for cleaning up there, a big chunk for work pops up, a few minutes of quiet before someone wakes.
This season of raising small children? This season, these days, are not my own.
I have dreams that are laying on hold, big dreams that I would love to see come to fruition. Dreams that are possible and relevant and exciting. And I am ok with waiting on them.
There are clothes I would love to wear, fitness plans I would love to start, dreams for my own body that are all on hold because in this season of sacrifice, even my body is not my own. This is ok with me – this body belonging to others – because it is a dream I wasn’t sure would be realized.
Days meet nights and the nights meet the day all too soon. Our bed is not only ours right now; some nights it holds four (kind of five) and a dog and enough love and sweet dreams to make it burst. Even our nighttime hours are not our own, and for these moonlight years it is ok.
We trade a clean house for loud joyful games, shiny sinks for dinnertime memories, long morning showers for five more minutes of the snooze button. We run the washer and dryer more often than we run miles. We choose to embrace chaos instead of calm, allowing the latter to rule in our hearts and the former to rule our home.
I live in days of ‘or’, not days of ‘and’. My heart is finally welcoming these days instead of fighting against them, burning my candle at both ends and disappointing many along the way. I’m learning to say no, to decline amazing offers, to write down big ideas for later, and my family and my heart are reaping the quiet benefits.
I’d rather be living this dream than striving for the ones that are only my own. The dream of this sacrificial season, this season of mothering and parenting well and raising up small children, is worth my own being on hold. Someday my kids will see me living another kind of dream. These days they see us living it together.
If you are weary of sacrifice without thanks, you’re not alone. If dreams that quicken your heart are lying in a closed journal, know that it’s a ‘for now’, not a forever. This season is a blink and love is what will last.
I’m grateful for the small ways we can live little dreams, and I’m grateful for the big ways we can make right choices for the hearts we’re shepherding.
I may look longingly at the dreams others are living now, because our dreams are similar and they get to live theirs first. But I know others are looking at me, living mine, in exactly the same way. I am more than content – grateful – to live this dream, right here. They’re my dream, and they won’t wait.