Old Ladies, Shoes, Etc.

At 4:30 this morning I threw a temper tantrum in the hallway. I stomped my feet on the cold tiles and threw my hands in the air, fist first. I was not sleeping, and my 4 month old was not sleeping. He decided to rise at 12, then at 2, then at 3:15, then at 4:20.  Boo.

It’s almost 9 a.m. and we’re having movies with popcorn. Things are pretty cozy here; my table is covered in mutilated construction paper and safety scissors,  there’s a cool autumn chill in the air, the coffee is working it’s magic and the baby is finally asleep.

In the wee hours of the morning I thought peace would never reign. I fantasized about sending my kids off to my mother, for their own safety. Surviving the day seemed impossible.

It’s like that in the night; the hopeless hours where everything is dark, everyone is crying and there is no rest. I give myself up for lost, the sun rises and the coffee brews. In daylight the shadows fade and I lower standards to a comfortable level of pajamas till noon and Barney for breakfast.

I used to run away from hard things. I was ruled by fear. Fear comes in many shapes, but it balloons into a suffocating sphere when you reach the end of your strength. I’ve always been afraid to lose my strength, and at 4 a.m. I’m still afraid. What will the morning bring?

The morning brings the dawn. Slowly, over coffee cups and crayons, I’m learning the secret to popping the balloon of fear. I’m learning to trust that when I reach the end of my strength, God’s strength is still there, working in me, through me, weaving peace in cartoons and crafts. There is no dark with Him, He never rests, and He has offered us all Peace that Passes Understanding. All it takes is surrender.  I seem to have a lot of white flags.

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.” -Romans 15:13

I am weak
He is strong
silk and sugar with a splash of coffee
construction paper
googly eyes
a clean “poop trash” (Shel’s name for kitty litter)
sleeping babies
awake babies
babies in swings
baby showers
a get away planned
a future face to face meeting with a person who loves
pen tattoos

485-499 of my gratitude list

28 thoughts on “Old Ladies, Shoes, Etc.

  1. You are my favorite….thank you. Bless you! I rewarded myself with a piece of pie for breakfast after our night…You help me have grace for myself and that is a good thing!!! Love and more love.


  2. oh, those nights of so many wake-ups are oh so recent in this home… and those mornings of lowered-to-comfortable standards are still here.

    thank you. I feel it.


  3. It IS like that in the night, isn't it? Gosh I hate that. I've been waking at 3:30 a.m. (maybe I should ring you?) every night, just clenched in anxiety. Too much to do, won't get it done, feel crazy. Then, in the morning, it all seems not half as bad.

    Love that verse. Just wrote it down this Sunday on a gift the kids and I were making for the girl we sponsor in Africa. Kind of funny to see it here again.

    Love you!


  4. I remember the first night I felt like that. My firstborn was four and a half months old and, I found out later, was suffering from her first cold. I remember the helpless feeling, the exhaustion. Sadly, I didn't learn to lower the standards until the second baby came along. You're a smart lady.

    Love the list.


  5. i was thinking today about being like a child. they get afraid, but they run to their parent and trust him or her to make things okay again. even if they aren't perfectly okay. i've been chronically ill my daughter's whole life. (she's now 21.) i remember when she was small, she could play happy games, even on the days i was really sick and couldn't get out of bed. it's not that she was never afraid, it's that she lived in the moment. i want to be more like a child – not fearing the scary tomorrows. believing the morning will dawn even in the darkest of nights. sorry, this was rambling, but i've been sick lately and my mind is not at its best…


  6. i have always been afraid to lose my strength.
    motherhood is the undoing of all things i thought i was scared of. mainly the realization that i am stronger and weaker than i ever thought possible.
    loved this. big time.


  7. It is so true that troubles loom larger than life in the dead of night. I had a child who loved to see my face many times a night. There were moments I thought I just might not survive. But I did. That child is 21 and has brought so much joy into our home and hearts. She and I laugh at her baby antics now but back then it wasn't funny : )

    Your little guy is positively adorable!


  8. Wishing now I read this yesterday but I'm sure I'll need it today too. I am a mess of hormones and everything seems too big. Thank you for the reminder that God's strength comes in when we are at the end of ours. I love your words.


  9. oh girl. how do you do it? come up with such inspiration after little to no sleep? we were talking about this in coffee-break today, how dark the night seems, how everything is always better in the morning. love you.


  10. I was just passing by and thought id stop to say hello. I'm checking new blogs today, and i hope you folks are enjoying the fall weather like we are having here in Pennsylvania. Richard from the Amish community of Lebanon county.


  11. Baby looks a lot like biggest, I think. You're a great mom, especially when you turn on Barney and let everyone stay in his pjs. We try to make so many of the things that don't matter, matter, and vice versa. We're so backwards and upside-down. Sometimes it's only in our exhaustion and surrender that we get it right. Love you.


  12. Gosh have I missed your drivel! Finally getting back to the reading and the commenting. I've been busy – but more quiet than busy. Just in a 'place'. Something that has been giving me such great peace is saying out loud 'God is Here'. It's a great reminder that he never leaves us indeed. Hope you sleep. Put your owl hat on for comfort. xo


  13. Oh sweet baby!
    (Is it me or does he look like Shel?)

    Sorry about the 12. And the 2. And the 3:15. And the 4:20.

    I got tired typing it, so no wonder you're tired living it.


    In this crazy world, at least there is poop trash.

    And sweet baby boys.

    Hang in there, friend.
    You are a miracle.


  14. Romans 15:13…its going on the wall here!as you know tilly has a chronic sleep dysfunction as part of her sms…basically she doesnt…FOREVER! so i know that bubble of fear and the dark of the night…'just keep swimming' is my chant but this scripture may replace it! love you beautiful girl xxx


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