The Days Are Long
Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.
I may be a little biased, but I am the mother of three very adorable children. The result being that, whenever we go out, someone stops to tell me how cute my children are*. Since I am usually in the midst of a two to three hour long grocery shopping gauntlet, I try to smile and nod. But my eyes are usually glazed over, and I probably have a little bit of a frantic look. Because I am scanning to make sure three children are still near me, and that they haven’t destroyed anything in the store. My children like to hide in clothes racks, and behind toilet paper packages. They will climb things if left in one spot too long, and they always make their way to the toilet plunger isle and proceed to stick as many toilet plungers to the floor as they can. They can be loud and disruptive, or (which is sometimes worse) very very quiet. The very very quiet never bodes well for me. When we get to the check out line and the clerk asks how I am, I usually respond, “Pretty good, considering we didn’t burn the store down.”
Just a snap shot into the chaos that is my everyday life. It is exhausting. And fun, and funny, and… wonderful. Don’t get me wrong- this stage of life is wonderful! And exhausting.
The most common comment I get with my kids is something along the lines of, “Enjoy this time, it goes by so fast!” Since I am usually told this while I am at the grocery store hollering at one child to get down off the toilet paper display, and another child to not open a bag of M&Ms, and belatedly realizing I only have two children in my line of sight and the third has vanished… well, I don’t usually know what to say to that comment. I believe it. I try to remind myself to appreciate these days. But in reality I am just trying to make sure I don’t forget to buy milk and get out of the store before a major disaster occurs!
A friend recently told me a quote that I prefer, just because it is a little bit more truthful about this stage of life:
The days are long, but the years are short.
The days can seem long. The little things sometimes add up, and my children might get to experience a very grumpy mommy. But all the days pass quickly. My oldest is starting to do things on his own. When he crosses the street on his own, I sometimes wonder when his little hand outgrew mine. Remembering that the years are short, helps me to remember how precious the little things are. How precious these children are.
Children are precious.
Children are a heritage from the Lord,
offspring a reward from him.
Heavenly Father, thank you for children. Thank you that You have a plan and purpose for each child. Bless our children. Protect and direct them. I pray you would help us to be the kind of people who can find joy in the everyday little things. I ask that you would renew our bodies and spirits so we are not exhausted or discouraged, and that we would have your perspective. Thank you for this life. Thank you for these years. Thank you for this day. In Jesus name, Amen!
*My two year old, who warms up very slowly to strangers (if at all), had an incident recently. A woman who could easily have been my grandma came up to him while he was in a shopping cart, and said, “Aren’t you the cutest thing.” To which he quickly and loudly replied, “I DON’T LIKE YOU!”
**The first picture is my father and eldest son peeking into the barn that was on the family farm my dad grew up at. The house is gone now, and you can barely see the out house, as it is falling over and covered in weeds. But the barn still stands. My dad told stories of when he was young and all the shenanigans he got into with his siblings. The idea of no running water and outhouses is shocking to me, even more so to my son. It seems like something from a book from hundreds of years ago. But it was my father’s childhood. My son is like a mini-me of my father, so to see the two together sometimes makes me wonder where another 50 years will take us. And while that seems so far off… the years are short. And we are but a vapor, a mist.