Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Weary Mama

It is my opinion that our bodies shoot out extra adrenaline to make it through those first weeks and months of a having a newborn. And then it fades off and we have to just take over...Well, my adrenaline pump has quit working. It has cold turkey left me in the paddies.
The addition of the 3rd girl has made things busier....and me....sleepier. I'm not even complaining, I need no sympathy. It's not the kind of tired where I can't drive....just the kind of tired where I am walking up to the car...holding one girls hand, car seat slung over the other arm and I can't remember which car door to open, to help everyone into the right car seat.
Vivian only gets up once a night...Now that I am back to the gym full time, toting three girls with interrupted sleep makes for one tired Mommy.
The girls decided, (just about the very second that Vivian was born) that they were done taking naps. So they go to bed anytime between 5:45 - 6:30pm (tonight it was 5:20, is that nuts?) and wake up around 5:45 or 6:00 AM. In the morning, they stand by my bed rip-roaring-ready to tackle the day in a loud, excited way. When my feet hit the floor, it's on like Donkey Kong. But His word promises the weary find rest.
'Come to me all who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.' Matthew 11:28

(If I am repeating myself in the post, sorry. These are just my thoughts. I am tooo sleepy to remember what I have written recently.)
Thankfully, I have a big, little-girl who is ready for every challenge and she really wants to help. I rarely, if EVER, make dinner alone anymore. If Carlisle is within a 1000 yard radius, she wants to help. And, she loves her baby.

Baby loves everyone in the family.
But, her favorite people in our family? Carlisle and Daddy
She laughs and does big gummy smiles at her big sister, she just absolutely adores Carlisle. And the feeling is mutual.
The one that makes her knit her little eyebrows, look surprised and blink? Evelyn

And of course, she thinks I am the milk truck.
Carlisle actually took the two pictures of her sister.
(The one above and below.)

So, in the midst of my sleepiness, it's hard to figure out times to be with God. I fall asleep reading the bible at night. That's not my best that I want to give to the Lord. So I am asking Him to reveal to me where I can give him my time.
That very morning, I got a clear message.
In the car, waiting to pick up the girls.
At night when I am feeding the baby.
All the time.
Of course, I knew that.
But I needed to hear it from Him.
And, I did.
I adore Evelyn's little face in the picture above, just trying to squeak in...
I was a dancer when I was growing up. And I wore legwarmers, long ones, short ones, purple ones, pink ones.
Carlisle has been taking dance for almost 2 years now. For 2 years I have asked her every time she got dressed for dance, 'Do you want to wear your legwarmers this time?'
She wasn't interested.
But then her little baby came along. And busted out her tiny legwarmers...
Guess who decided she was interested in wearing her purple legwarmers to dance this week...

Brian and I care for each other in a way that allows for wiggle room. I get to wiggle off to the gym and teach aerobics and have been doing in 4-6 times a week for 8 or 9 years.

He gets so much time with his best buddies because some of them have no children yet...

And in turn he really wants me to get away. 'Leave the girls and run off to the beach with your friends!' I told him that after thinking it over I think I want a getaway right here at the house. A few days of total peace and quiet sleeping in my own bed. If I could just sleep in until 8:00 or 8:30am, that would be SUCH a luxury. Of course 10am would be even better.

Probably 6 weeks ago, the three girls and I went to the Chick Fil A for lunch. I remember because the baby was a week or so old. We had been hanging around the house so much with a newborn, and I thought it would be a good thing to burn off some of their energy. It started out as a typical trip, they ate and ran off to the play area.
20 minutes into the fun, I see HER FACE. Evelyn, coming off the end of the slide. She looks so incredibly upset that I leave my newborn in her carseat beside the table and RUN through the restaurant to her. She is coming out the door and I scoop her up. I can tell from the sound, and the way, that she is crying that this is SINCERE. She's hurt and she's REALLY upset. I start asking her and Carlisle who is right behind her, what happened.
Evelyn keeps saying over and over, 'That girl hit me'.
When I question Carlisle, she very seriously says, 'That girl hit her.'
'I don't know Mom. She just hit her. She's really not nice.' We were actually quite the spectacle because Evelyn was crying in such a heartbroken way.
I look around the restaurant and my eyes meet the eyes of an older woman. She approaches and asks specifically if a little girl had hit Evelyn.
I say, 'yes'.
She then replies, 'I'm going to beat her', referring to her Granddaughter, the culprit. By that time, the Granddaughter sulks up and is pulled over to the table to have an unpleasant conversation with the grandfather and grandmother.
Meanwhile, I am sitting at our table holding Evelyn, talking with the girls. About forgiveness. About why we should be kind. How it hurts when we or others are unkind. How we need to forgive, even those that hurt us. But honestly, inside, my heart was really nuts. The words coming out of my mouth were one thing, but my heart was MAD. Mama Bear was raging. And, I really wanted to hear all the details...where did she hit her? how hard? how could she? of all the little girls to hit, don't you know this one is going to be brokenhearted by the assault?
Then the girl is basically dragged over by her ear to apologize. She mumbles 'I'm sorry.' Evelyn, still crying, grabs her pulls her into a hug and cries, 'I'm Sorry.' Again, broken hearted Mama. She hadn't done anything wrong and yet was apologizing.
FAST FORWARD 6 weeks. We hadn't been to the Chick Fil A in 6 weeks. But everytime Evelyn sees a slide, she says, 'That girl hit me.'
And I say, 'I know Baby, I am so sorry.'
So, we are driving to the Chick Fil A and it is a little bit like dread for both girls. They fear seeing the bully girl. We talk about it and I assure them that the bully girl won't be there. I promise yummy food, ice cream and fun.
15 minutes into the fun...IT. HAPPENS. AGAIN.
Evelyn, at the bottom of the slide, WAILING. And then the two of them busting through the door...I hear her voice and Carlisle's voice jumbled together saying, 'That girl! She hit me AGAIN.'
I look carefully across the faces of the children in the area...THERE SHE IS. How could I have not noticed her. How did I miss her? I am dumbfounded. Hurt. Sad for my baby girl.
I fed my little sweet ones to the wolf. It may sound over dramatized. IT'S NOT. The girl was AWFUL. Carlisle and Evelyn's sweet 11 year-old friend happened to be with them in the slide and vouched that the girl hit Evelyn for no reason and was 'VERY MEAN'.
I searched my heart. I wanted to run over to the Grandfather and make him make her apologize. But, the deal is this. The issue is not the bully. The issue is how do WE handle the bully? The mean people of life? The bible talks about it. And, it happens to be the verse our family was memorizing that week...so what do we do? WE are kind and compassionate. And then. WE. FORGIVE.
It SUCKS to be teaching your two and four year-old about bullies at the Chick Fil A play area. But it's a sad reality. We happened to have just memorized Ephesians 4:32...Evelyn will say it for you in the video below.

'Be kind and compassionate to one another,
forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave YOU
Ephesians 4:32

And this video blessed me. Taken the very day that the bully struck for the second time. We weren't talking about the girl. I was just videoing them. But over and over she says, 'God forgave you. God forgave YOU.'
So true.
As adults we don't hit on slides anymore.
But we sure do things that are unpleasing to the Lord.
And, we are forgiven.
It's just what we need to hear.

Evelyn: 'God forgave you.....God forgave you too....God forgave you too.....'

Vivian (in the background explaining that she's hungry) 'waaaaaaaaa!'

Carlisle (the videographer's assistant): 'Am I still like a statue?'


Julie and Luke said...

Baby is looking bigger. I love her.

Brandi said...

It's Beautiful!