Friday, December 17, 2010

On Being Cherished

I'm NEVER going to ballet lessons AGAIN!  I HATE BALLET!  Mia screamed and thrashed on the bed as I closed the door on her tantrum.  My hands were shaking with irritation and frustration.  I stomped away, seeking refuge in the company of my toddler, but when I found her in the living room, she was stripping off her freshly-chosen outfit and crying: I'm wearing something DIFFERENT!  I don't LIKE these clothes.  We had to leave soon, and now none of us were dressed.

That was 9AM.  The day progressed.  Lauren almost stopped listening altogether. Mia became a comedienne, trying to make her mama laugh.  Mama, will you talk brightly?

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Dinner preparations were halfway completed.  Vegetables were ready; rice was almost done; sweet potatoes were in their final baking stretch.  All that was left was the fish -- and I hoisted some quick instructions onto Justin's capable hands before dashing out the front door to a chorus of Bye!s and Have Fun, Mama!s.  Key in ignition, volume turned up, I was away. 

At  the gym, I complained to Jill, who, blessedly, knew exactly what to do: laugh.  We walked and ran and talked more than should be allowed when two persons are supposedly giving their all-out effort.  (But it WAS an all out effort -- because running without a chatting partner is impossibly dull for me.)  We panted and laughed about the bewilderment that accompanies raising children.  I mean....it was the kind of day....that made me CUSS...and slam DOORS...and I'm so glad for...the chance to get out...of the house...even if it requires...sweat! 

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Besides the twinkling lights wrapping our porch in a sweet glow, our house was very dark.  I snuck through the door -- were the girls already close to bed?  I didn't want to disturb bedtime... -- into the quiet house.  Gazing across the toy-littered living room, I listened: whispers and giggles were hiding down the hall.  I faked a wondrous line of questioning (the gym having restored my willingness to play along).  Well -- what's going on here?  Where's my family?  Miiiiaaaaa.....Laurrennnn....Daaaddyyyy...where'd everybody go? 

Two girls erupted in squeals and stormed across the carpet while Justin shushed them.  Wait!  Wait!  Let her get into the kitchen first!

A burning Boysenberry Pie candle in a shiny tin propped up a note of paper, and a cloth napkin sported a fork.  Ice water in a glittering glass.  The note: I cherish you, Sarah.  Love, Justin  P.S. Check in the oven.

Before I could get there, I was assailed by Lauren (in a bathing suit and panties).  Mia was close behind, in a sleeveless denim jumper. (It was 25 degrees outside.)  We hugged times three, Justin looking on from the doorway.  In the still-warm oven, my dinner was plated beautifully, presented thoughtfully.  The three of them ran back down the hallway, leaving me alone in a candle-lit dream. 

Daddy!  Let's play the dropping game!  No -- let's slide off your back!  Daddy!  Daaaddddyyyy!

Their voices were muffled and precious.  My dinner was hot.  I was refreshed.

Cherished, too.

16 comments:

  1. You have a keeper there Sarah! A partner. One who understands you. It sounds like a mixed blessing kind of day.

    Also, the perfect end to a day.

    I loved reading this. It made me smile. :) "Brightly"

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  2. This made me smile too. Knowing we're cherished can help us weather the worst of days, can't it?

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  3. What a wonderful moment! I love how you captured their giggly, crazily dressed dad moment and the precious feelings of knowing they all love you so... even on one of THOSE days. Really hits home. Thank you!

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  4. What a beautiful post. I so know every aspect of this kind of day- the irritation, the need to get away, and the thankfulness to return to a really wonderful family. :) Love this!

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  5. Loved the story of your day.... How heavenly an evening! :)

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  6. So sweet! Reminds me of Song of Solomon 3:4 I have found the one my soul loves!

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  7. Gosh, I'm jealous. My husband's been gone on a business trip and it sucks.

    Also: did you figure out a reason for the ballet-hatred? And how did you handle it? My 4-year-old recently cried and refused to do dance when she normally LOVES it! Mystifying children!

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  8. I'm teary from this. That husband of yours is wonderful. I know because I have one just like him -- one with capable hands who can care for two rambunctious boys while I head to workout nearly every night of the week. One who takes on bedtime like a pro. One who cherishes me, too.
    Your writing is lovely ... thanks for sharing this one, Sarah.

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  9. That's some hubby you got there!

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  10. sarah, i love this! and i'm so happy you carved out a space for yourself and still come cherished and well-cared for. lovely lovely:)

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  11. Awww...how sweet! Sounds like the perfect end to the day :)

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  12. Sweet.

    Thanks for a reminder to see the good things and forget the frustrating things.

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  13. Oh, good job Justin! Sweet, silly girls--I love how excited they were to surprise you! And I'm so glad you had a chance to slip away for awhile. (Isn't it strange how quickly the gym can become "me" time?)

    But...what's going on with Mia and ballet?

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  14. Aww, so special. This post is making me feel weepy, now I have proof positive that I am in fact pregnant! *snif*

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  15. Oh wonderful man!! there is just something about being cherished that makes everything go back into perspective again.

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  16. Oh when you write stuff like this it makes me want to steal your husband! Maybe I should have Travis read these.

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Hmm...And how did that make you FEEL?