Sad but True Confessions

9:19 AMHeather

The following is a true story.  The names of the not-so-innocent children people have been changed.

After a lovely week long vacation from all things motherhood, to say the re-entry was rough would be an understatement.  The day of the flight back, I was awakened by an automated call announcing my flight had been cancelled.  Not to worry--the airline had re-booked us to return home one day later.  Then, a not-so-friendly ticket agent could not understand why that wasn't acceptable?!  (do most people agree to this?).  Panic and phone call #2 led me to a nicer ticket agent.  Problem solved, arriving home a bit later, but now having to switch planes.  Except that flight #1 was delayed.  More panic.  By God's grace, flight #2 was leaving out of the next gate.  Whew!  Then, a crazy DFW cab driver whose sanity or sobriety should be questioned verbally assaulted us the entire way home, then refused to take our money.  Yet, he threatened to call the police because we wouldn't pay?!  Huh?  As he yelled at me, my ever-so-patient husband stepped behind us and firmly let him know to leave our neighborhood.

Whew!  The next night a migraine came.  And, the children returned.  The perfect storm of the last few days culminated in a very, very rough day yesterday.  

There was whining and fussing and arguing.  Sarcastic comments about the lack of food in the house (because my magical grocery fairy had forgotten to fill the pantry whilst I was away).  Complaints about being bored, ignoring commands to put their breakfast plates away.  Cries over the laundry list of friends who were not answering their phones to set up a play date.  Sorry--I mean a time to hang out (I forget my kids aren't preschoolers anymore).  My head was pounding.  My body was tired.  Even calgon couldn't take me away.  

A movie was my solution to both entertain the kidlets and give me a nice, dark theater for my throbbing head.  Except that I gave no budget for $15 popcorn or $5 cokes.  Whine, whine, whine--so UNFAIR.  (Didn't we JUST eat lunch?).  Buoyed by the enjoyable movie, I surprised the kids with some ice cream.  Except we had to pass Legoland and the new Aquarium to get to the food court.  Yep--you guessed it.  "WHY can't we EVER go there?"  Deep breathing and counting to ten for me lest I say something I regretted.

Three milkshakes later, I asked my darlings to watch my purse while I ran to the restroom.  A quick 5 minutes later, as I bolted across the food court--I saw the purse.  Alone.  On top of a table.  No children in sight.  And, my blood pressure rose.  QUICKLY.  Of course, their defense was they had only walked away for a minute.  Teeth gritting.  Major tongue biting on my part.  And, we drove home with children fussing about how unfair and boring the day had been.  

And, THEN, things escalated.  The never-ending whiny day was truly never ending.  While I escaped to my bedroom as quickly as possible and my beloved tucked the little darlings in, I thought I could relax.  But, then, just when I thought it was safe to get back in the water, a child battled insomnia.  And for nearly 4 hours, said child appeared repeatedly in our room, crying and weeping and gnashing their teeth.  And, oh, I wanted to join in!  So I did.

Somewhere about 12:30 a.m., my husband heard me grumble something about turning in my resignation because I was done mothering.  (This works about as well calling in sick, by the way--in case you were wondering).

I woke up exhausted and still frustrated and unsure how to navigate the way.  And, I relented to the conviction that I should at least start my day by reading my Bible.  Zap!  There I was, in the story that I read, and I knew it was my Heavenly Father's way of gently reminding me of my priorities.

 9 But God said to Jonah, “Is it right for you to be angry about the plant?”
“It is,” he said. “And I’m so angry I wish I were dead.”
 10 But the LORD said, “You have been concerned about this plant, though you did not tend it or make it grow. It sprang up overnight and died overnight. 11 And should I not have concern for the great city of Nineveh, in which there are more than a hundred and twenty thousand people who cannot tell their right hand from their left—and also many animals?” Jonah 4:9-11

INTENTIONAL challenge:  Just was Jonah was angry because the plant God gave him withered, I was angry because the children He gave me were struggling with re-entry--just as I was.  I have been grumbling about having to delay my task list, juggling the needs and desires of three children who want things to be fair, and the foolishness that is bound in the heart of a child.  All the while, God says that while my priority is the plant--His priority is the people.  These short people He gave me.  These blessings--NOT impositions.  Ouch.  I have got to refocus here.  Deep breaths.  Frequent prayers.  Submitting to Him to choose His perspective.  Maybe I should carry around a withered plant today to remind me?!

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