Friday, December 20, 2013

The Days Are Long But the Years Are Short

I read this last night and it really struck me, probably because I have two kids in the last years of school--a senior in high school and an 8th grader in her last year of junior high. In the monotony and grind of daily life it seems that hardly any time passes at all. But when I consider that only a few short years ago I had four children in Primary it seems impossible that they have grown. I still expect to see Tyce jumping on the bike ramp outside with his friends, or to have Mary's wish list to be filled with requests for My Little Pony. But here they are, taller, smarter, and older than the years should have allowed.

Tyce with his pretty Homecoming date, Kayley, back in October.

Mary and I after Thanksgiving.
Tyce joined our family 16 years ago, December 17th. Sometimes I think of that first Christmas with us, when he was a toddler who'd been with us less than a week. He was the cutest, sweetest boy we'd ever seen, so overwhelmed by the Christmas spectacle that he hid out in a giant box. I have often felt cheated by my time with him, since he was already 17 months when he came to live with us; his milestones have arrived way too fast. He was given the gift of music and when I consider all the difficulties that he has (self-inflicted and life-given), it is a blessing that he has music to sustain him. He has loved singing this Christmas season all over the city. He sang a solo, "You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch" at the concert this week and he was amazing. We are so impressed with his talent and proud of the good things he does.

A few years ago our family was hit with a devastating blow. It sent us in to a tailspin in every aspect imaginable--emotionally, spiritually, and financially, to name a few. Life had been hard and rocky for a while but at a certain point Bryce and I went into hibernation. We set our lives on autopilot to deal with the repercussions of the situation. It wasn't willful--it was survival. Because of that I think I missed a lot of what was going on around me, the good things. This is one of the many reasons I am grateful to be homeschooling Mary. Our time together has been  truly one my greatest blessings.

Yesterday we had the carpets cleaned so she and I were out for the day. Mary has many quirks and one of them is anxiety--she didn't want anyone in her room. There was a minor meltdown but she was able to pull it together in the end, enough to leave the house. She didn't want to see a movie but she did want to visit her dad at work. She we just showed up, and lucky for her, there was a dessert party downstairs. It was very hard for her to talk to people but she endured the socialization for the sake of mini red velvet cupcakes. After that we drove to the Las Vegas temple. We sat in the car, listened to sweet music, and talked. I love that I can bear my testimony to her, and that she accepts it. I have talked to many young people in my life but to share my deepest feelings with my daughter, and know that is hearing with her ears and her heart, is a joy.

Because we are together all day I can work WITH her personality instead of steam-rolling right over it, which is what I have done in the past (being frustrated, angry, and intolerant of her social issues and learning style). She is an amazing person, and forgiving of my follies as a mother. I thought I knew it all but I was wrong; she is patient as she teaches me how to love her. I always had the feeling but I lacked the ability to make my actions match. I am obviously still learning but my skill set is growing.

I am trying to be more mindful of the twins as well. They are in a wonderful stage of life, those sweet elementary years, still innocent and loving. I can't think of them without my eyes welling up with tears for the lovely boys they are, good and honest. Oh man, I love them so much, hope so much for them. I want to protect them from everything and everyone who would bring them down.

Harrison playing with worms.

Cameron was looking for worms as well, but settled for climbing walls (literally).

I wonder if over 2000 years ago, another mother felt the same way when she looked at her young Son.

"She Shall Bring Forth a Son" by Liz Lemon Swindle

Did the days feel long to her? Did she bathe him, feed him, and teach him like we do? Did she fret that she was doing enough, that her Son would measure up to his potential? Did she ever long for free time? And did she marvel that though the years seemed short, that He grew into a man before her very eyes?

Did her heart break knowing the burden He was willing to bear not just for her, but for all mankind?

Perhaps we are in good company.

"Mother" by Liz Lemon Swindle

Mary did you know that your baby boy will one day walk on water?
Mary did you know that your baby boy will save our sons and daughters?

Did you know that your baby boy has come to make you new?
This child that you've delivered, will soon deliver you.

Mary did you know that your baby boy will make a blind man see?
Mary did you know that your baby boy will calm a storm with his hand?
Did you know that your baby boy has walked where angels trod?
And when you kiss your little baby, you have kissed the face of God.

The blind will see, the deaf will hear and the dead will live again.
The lame will leap, the mute will speak, the praises of the lamb.

Mary did you know that your baby boy is Lord of all creation?
Mary did you know that your baby boy will one day rule the nations?
Did you know that your baby boy is heaven's perfect Lamb?
This sleeping child you're holding is the great I Am.


FoReVeR WeLcH said...

Beautiful post!!! And THAT is one of my FAV songs!!!!! LOVE Kenny Rogers!!!!!!!

SweetmamaK said...

I just cried- Love love love you