I looked both ways and pulled out onto the road.
The kids were buckled in.
I had my purse, AND phone. My mental check list.
I took a deep breath and felt accomplished, for a moment.
Then I caught a glimpse of myself in the review mirror.
I did a double take.
Was that me?
Tired. I looked haggard.
I glanced at the road and then back at the mirror.
I smiled. It helped, really it did.
But that shock stuck with me.
Life as a mom is just exhausting.
Never off call. Ever wearing the pager, which goes off at all times.
Nursing through the night, helping a restless teething baby at all hours,
wiping bottoms and settling squabbles.
Sometimes I just want to sleep.
We pull deep from our resources to mother.
We want to do a good job, and we pull harder. We dig deeper.
We put all we have out on the counter, with the pile of dirty dishes and toast crumbs.
We nearly tumble into the washing machine with the armloads of smelly laundry.
We catch a glimpse of the weeds pushing up stubbornly through the freshly laid mulch,
and we look away.
We feel life real.
We snuggle a little one close, and smell deeply of the sweet tousled hair,
and get caught off guard by the rank, depths of a nasty diaper a few inches below.
It never ends.
But neither do the smiles from that six year old boy who catches that sigh that escapes,
and wraps a gangly arm around you.
He plants an unexpected kiss on your cheek and the tiredness from the morning starts to fade.
You see, we DO pour out a lot. A LOT.
But there are these moments of heaven where God wants to pour right back into our soul.
To bear up our tired heart with joy.
To see we aren’t just giving, but being richly given back to.
As moms, we are loved and touched and cared for all day long. In so many ways.
We just need to see it.
God speaks love to us by our children’s glittering eyes. By that smile.
Through the “thank you” as we hand them a plastic cup of water. Let’s not miss it today.
When we are weak, He is strong.
And when we feel like we have nothing to give, let Him pour joy into your heart.
Through His word. And through the free love of your children.
Drink deep. ‘Cause it is rich and sweet.