Monday, May 2, 2011

Food for Thought

It's May, but you wouldn't know it by the chilly temps and weird weather patterns. Who ordered 35 degrees, the other day? The clouds, hovering over us, have blocked out much needed sunlight and disrupted our steady reliance on children's public television--my kids have become a broken record: "Mommy, the TV is scratching, again!" That's what we call it when the DVD's start pixelating on the big screen. Yes, we've had some better days, but who's complaining?

Then there is my least favorite time of the day: meal times. I have run out of ideas on what my children might refuse to eat, on any given day. Both are very different in their tastes and dislikes, making it hard to come up with choices that work for everyone. I refuse to be a short order cook, however. So this morning, I covered up my daughter's rejected peanut butter sandwich and orange slices, with a big bowl--vowing that she would have to eat it later, if she was, indeed, hungry. And sure enough, a few hours later, she reluctantly ate her sandwich--and then devoured two whole pears, cut in slices.

Yesterday, there was discussion on the color of water bottles and flatware. My son wanted the blue cup with the hammerhead sharks, swirling about. My daughter agreed to switch, since her brother had the orange cup: her favorite color. But then she took it a step further: "Mommy, I want the green fork. See, it matches the stripes on my shirt!" Oh bother...not only do we have to find the perfect food, but we also have to color-coordinate our utensils and dinnerware with our outfits! I hate to admit it, but I understand why McDonald's is just easier than arguing with them.

We are so ready for warm weather and a change of pace. I'm coming off the heels of a cyclical depression, from grief stuff. So glad that I decided to see someone about that, this time around. It has been good for me, and will continue to provide clarity to my situation. In the mean time, I just keep going with my routine, not allowing myself to wallow in the emotions of it all, for too long. I take the time I need, and then keep going. Some days, just crossing errands off my list is all I can do to feel like I accomplished something good, you know?

Aside from that, I keep dreaming. I know there are bigger things out there for me. It's a struggle to sort out the difference between enjoying the life you have from knowing that God has more in store for you. I suppose it depends on how you react to where you're at. Do I covet another person's success or complain about where I'm at? And then there's the fact that a depressed person will have a hard time enjoying much of anything, especially activities that normally do bring joy. This, no doubt, comes out of the grieving process(for me).

I love being a mom to my kids. I'm so thankful that I've had the opportunity to be here, with them, for the majority of their days, thus far. I like cooking. I don't like cooking, for them(LOL).I love writing. I do it for the pure pleasure that it brings, and because I need to do it, to feel alive. I love music. It is the avenue that lead me to God, and it is what I offer back up, to Him, in leading worship. I love the outdoors. I enjoy the creation that is all around us and marvel at the wonders of God's handiwork. I like that I can use plant material, through designs, to make a person's outdoor space, a beautiful one.

These are some of the things I love. I have to remind myself, because sometimes I forget. I'm learning how to love people better(aren't we all). How to better show love to my husband, my family. When I think of the blessings in my life, I don't have much to complain about. I'm thankful for the support I've received to carry me through this sadness. Isn't it amazing that we can always love better when we've spent some time with God? We love Him by taking that time--and then we, in turn, have the energy to love each other well. It's the kind of circulation I want in my life, keeping me from becoming indifferent and stagnant.

At night, when we pray with our kids, the one thing that we ask God for(above all else)is that our kids will love God and follow hard after Him. That they will give Him their hearts and lead a life that would be honoring to Him. We know that if they do this, everything else will fall into place--not a life of perfection or one that is free from trouble, but a life that is "in place".

I can learn something from the very prayers I cover my children with: if I love God, everything else will fall into place. I will hear his voice, discern his will, and have the courage to take some risks, discovering what the next chapter holds in this short life.

I guess maybe I need to trust Him more, like a child trusts their parents to take care of them. Even if kids don't like what is set before them, if they're hungry enough, they will eat--sooner or later. And when we've eaten all "the good stuff" that we're supposed to, there is always dessert: my personal favorite, being dark chocolate.