Saturday, June 28, 2014

in the thick of this mess

It's 11:20 on a Friday night and the dishwasher's still full from dishes from the day before, tonight's dinner and dishes are skewed on every "free" counter space available, I have three loads of clean laundry that need to be "ironed" (ahem, straightened out by another run in the dryer), sand and crumbs layer the carseats and floor in our SUV from our recent outings, and I still need to find room in the fridge for the 2 new gallons of milk (basically, clean out the fridge), pack the husband's lunch because six/ seven day work weeks are his norm, and wake up early because I'm pretty positive the older boys are in need of antiobics (aka I need to get myself and four kids ready for the doctor early in the AM).

A simple, "I'm busy," doesn't begin to explain my life. "Overwhelming" hardly begins to scratch the surface. There are moments I yearn for empty hands and the possession of time as my own but I know that right now, at the peak of this season of exhaustion and busyness, I will never be more happy, content, and fulfilled.

The dishwasher's still full because last minute, I got invited to the ultrasound to find out if I'm going to have a nephew or a niece - during naptime (aka a parent's time to get anything done). Btw, it's a nephew!! Dinner wasn't cleaned up right away because I firmly believe ice cream always taste better when you go out to get it. It's a fact, actually. Laundry's so behind it's embarrassing because we've been out this week: family farm, the beach, and I squeezed in a date with the husband. Sure, the date included an oil change, renewing our auto tabs, and buying Ali a birthday dress with a near expiring coupon. Minor details. The point is I spent time by myself. with my husband. when the sun was actually out!! Miracles, ya'll, miracles.

I'm slowly and progressively learning to  prioritize. Clean houses just don't mean as much to me now as they use to because my kids are growing up and time is so incredibly fleeting. I mean, let's be real, I'll probably sleep half of a credited doctor's nightly suggestion of sleep because I'm still a bit of a neat freak ... but I've learned to let go.

I mean, Aiden hardly busts a move now because he's older and cooler. Tristen doesn't cuddle with me half as much as he used to. Ali's word-to-screaming ratio is widening in a good trending way. Thank goodness. And Carsen, my baby, demands to be treated just like the rest of the kids.

They're growing up. But even more than just growing up, they're changing. They become new people almost every day.

Quirks and traits that you used to define them slowly dwindle away until one day you realize they haven't done or said that thing in weeks. The sweetness of the words they can't properly pronounce is replaced with boring, regular speech. "Gankey" suddenly becomes "blanket." "Puppy-dog" is now adamantly a "dog."

The bitterness and sweetness of raising children is children just don't grow up, their very core changes. And if I spend most of my time cleaning my house and occupying my time with other things, I'm going to miss all these quirky, amazing people that grace my life for such short periods of my life. Right now, I'm digging the lego-obsessed kid that says, "this is the best. day. ever!!" at least twice a week, the shy kid that idolizes his older brother and will seriously ask us, "why we not sleeping?", the little girl that likes to "cheers" with her cup every time we eat and "pound it" immediately followed by an explosion sound, and the man-baby that has a crazy obsession with food and an even crazier dislike with the notion of sharing his mommy (jealousy is a legit thing).

Sure, I'll still love them when we start engaging in "adult talk" and I'm just as excited for them as they will be about growing up but right now, they're so dang amazing. And their love and need for me is overwhelming ... in the best. possible. way. I'm in the thick of this mess and I already miss all of it.

Saturday, June 7, 2014

foster to adopt?!

we're made the beautiful and terrifying decision to foster-to-adopt. i'm a bit of spontaneous, wild dreamer of a girl. my eyes have always widened at possibilities and new beginnings. saying yes to a boy that i only dated for 3 weeks hardly made me bat an eye and deciding to start having children when we had less money than zero never fazed me. optimism and the promise of love always gets the best of me.

but this absolutely, terrifies me in a poetic desperate way. i am going to fall in overwhelming, all-encompassing love with a child that may leave our lives in a moment's notice. how can anyone not fall in love with a child they care for? especially i? i rarely do anything half-way, let alone, love. i never do love with anything less than both feet in, head first, propelling as fast as gravity can take me.

i am terrified of a broken-heart.

but i know better. i know my fear is simply my selfish ways exemplified. because love does not love begging nor demanding for something in return. love simply exists, regardless of circumstances, reactions, approval, and gratitude.

God calls us to love others. period. He doesn't call us to love others only if they can stay in your family forever or if they bring you back something wonderful in return.

we're here to love.

jarod and i will start the process in a few months and we'll see if we get approved, if our landlord agrees, if our home is big enough, if our large family isn't too large, or any other reason it wouldn't work exists. please pray that things work out just right and we complete the foster care process and we can bring a little girl into our home to love.

. . . and please pray a little harder that she'll remain in our lives forever :)