There’s just so much to do.
Three kids, a puking cat, a smelly crayfish, wilting plants on the front porch, piles of laundry in the laundry room . . . and on our bed . . . and on the kids’ beds . . . and in the bathrooms.
Supper is a casserole, or something out of a box. Anything quick and easy for busy school nights.
There’s homework, and soccer and more sports coming up.
The dishes sit in the sink just laughing at me.
The crumbs stick to my feet when I walk across the floor.
And work piles up just as fast as the bills.
We’re in a busy season. We love it, of course. We’ve signed up for it all. But it’s exhausting.
There’s just so much to do.
My youngest will be 18 months soon. His baby days are coming to an end. He doesn’t need me to rock him anymore. We brush teeth and read books and say “night-night”.
But tonight, we sit together, just me and my little guy.
He wants me to hold him. We rock and we sing. I trace his pudgy feet and smell his locks of blonde hair.
He’s finally asleep, and now it’s time to say goodnight to his big sisters. They’re much older now, 10 and 8. They don’t need Mom to rock them anymore, either. Those days are long gone.
I look at the clock; it’s still early. Plenty of time for me to finish the dishes and maybe even relax on the couch with a glass of wine and a mindless show.
But the 8-year-old wants to read limericks from Where the Sidewalk Ends, and the 10-year-old wants to have “just a quick mom-chat”.
We read and we chat and the night ticks away. We say our prayers and “I love you” and I sigh a moment of relief as I close their bedroom doors and head upstairs.
But there’s just so much to do.
I know I should clean the kitchen. I know I should sweep the floor. But I can’t convince my body to do what my mind knows should be done.
I decide to hang with my favorite guy, instead. He sits in his chair, and I sit on the couch. We turn on the TV to relax. He picks house number three, I think they’ll go with number one.
I lose, again.
He’s good, that guy of mine. Our time together looks different from the past, before our floors were constantly sticky and our closets, overgrown with kid shoes.
Some days it’s high-fives in the hallway as we pass one another, tonight it’s another TV show before he falls asleep in his chair.
And finally, the house is silent. Everyone is asleep. My anxious mind tries to tell me I accomplished nothing tonight.
The laundry is still dirty.
The crumbs, still there.
The work wasn’t touched.
The plants aren’t even watered.
But my heart knows better.
My heart knows I had one more chance to snuggle by baby boy. My heart knows I had one more chance to connect with growing tween girls. My heart knows I relaxed with my husband before a busy day begins again. My heart knows these mundane moments are everything that makes this life wonderful.
The work can always wait, even when there’s so much to do.