Kari said, “I told myself daily, ‘All I have to do is love Piper. If I just focus on loving her, I will be able to handle any moment. I will be able to make the right decision in that moment because I love her.’ That was the best way not to fear her future, or any crises that might occur. I would be able to cope with them as they came in that moment, because my love would provide what was best for her in that situation.”
I have thought about that many times since I read it, and what a simple truth that is for all of us, in all relationships and situations, yet one I find so hard to put into practice. When I think about living my life this way, just focusing on loving my kids, just focusing on loving my husband, just focusing on loving in general, I realize how truly selfish I am.
More often than not, I am in a rush, I am after my kids to hurry up, and frustrated over so many things, so many little things that make life more difficult for me but really mean nothing in the grand scheme, like coats strewn about on the floor or spilled milk. Or that Ezra’s diaper is messy again for the 4th time today, and why isn’t he potty trained yet? I could list more, but I think the point has been made.
And then I read this post today on working heartily at whatever we do, as if it was actually God we were serving, and I thought about how if I just think of these kids as little Jesuses, then wouldn’t everything just be a lot more clear to me? If I just focus on loving them, won’t I be able to handle any moment, and make the right decisions, and love would provide?
I decided to put that into action today, and though I didn’t do everything perfectly, we shared some amazing moments together.
– staying off my phone during supper, to really engage in the meal with my family
– playing soccer with Ezra in the kitchen and chasing him around, the way he would giggle when I would come close and try to get the ball
– painting Eva’s fingernails and toenails
– nursing Isaac, playing with his hands and making him smile while he nursed
– my face close to Ezra’s, stroking his hair and humming “you are my sunshine” until he fell asleep
– cuddling with Eva on the couch while she drank milk and reading aloud from “Little House in the Big Woods”
– tickling Eva’s back and whispering her a song, since Ezra was already asleep
– my and Eva’s symbol for “I love you” before saying goodnight
These are moments that I will treasure forever in my heart, whether I remember them always or not. They may also be moments that my children treasure forever too. What they don’t know is how I chose to do most of those things in spite of what I really wanted to do, and how I kept my big mouth shut when I sometimes wanted to groan and complain about something they were doing that was annoying me.
Piper, I will always remember you, and Kari, thank you for teaching me that love can conquer all. All I have to do is love. May I focus only on loving all the days of my life.
This post is a part of a 31 day series in which I write about the extraordinary in my ordinary moments. To see a list of all the other posts, click here.