These past two years have really hit me hard like a good Arizona monsoon. I've had to strip my life down to the basics. What I mean is I don't waste time or energy on extras or things that I feel don't matter. My best energy needs to be saved and used for my family. We are running out of time with some of these kids and I feel (actually I know) that its crucial for me to BE HERE in body, spirit, mind and emotion. The fluff of life has had to go.
I like to focus on the things that keep our family humming as much as a busy, growing, teenagerish family of 7 can hum.
A clean house.
I have realized that when I get caught up in fluff I don't feel the spirit as easily. Have you ever sat in Sacrament meeting as everyone around you sniffled and reacted to a heartfelt talk or a peaceful musical number and not felt much. Ya that's what happens to me when I let school projects, extras, parties, decorations, shopping, heart aches, stresses and challenges crowd my life so much that those 6, more important things, get squished into the remaining smallest leftover space of my life.
And then I feel yucky.
One of my old Bishops used to always say, "what are you doing that is preventing you from feeling the Spirit?" I love that question! This last week I knew that I was doing something right when I was able to feel the Spirit sprinkling and whispering joy into the smallest details of life...
Cali climbed into bed with me early one morning and my whole soul filled with that deep Mother Love that you can really feel and understand now and then in the trenches of motherhood. And would you believe it, it was just the sweet flawless curve of her profile that launched all those feelings off the ground and took me into Heaven for a few precious moments before the sun came up.
Saturday night as the twins and their friends sat around the fire pit outback Scott and I and our two little girls watched Mary Poppins. I was leaning on Scott's shoulder with Ella's wet bath head in my lap when Bert the chimney sweep sits on the curb to talk to Jane and Michael.
"Your Dad's a mighty fine gentleman and he loves you. You know, begging your pardon, but the one my heart goes out to is your father. There he is, in that cold heartless bank day after day, hemmed in by mounds of cold heartless money. I don't like to see any living thing caged up. Look at it this way. You've got your mother to look after you and Mary Poppins and Constable Jones and me. Who looks after your father? Tell me that. When something terrible happens, what does he do? Fends for himself, he does. Who does he tell about it? No one. Don't blab his troubles at home. He just pushes on at his job, uncomplaining and alone and silent, it's not my place to say but I only observe that a father can always do with a bit of help."
And then I felt warm tears push out from their place and my heart pound with gratitude, I squeezed Scott's arm and buried my face in his shoulder. I love Bert the Chimney Sweep and I love Scott for carrying the weight of our whole family on his back.
I have the best running friend. We try to do at least one long run a week together and I always leave a better person than I came. Karlie is one of the wisest women I know and she inspires me to learn more, study more and BE more. We have the best discussions about the scriptures, FHE ideas, Jesus the Christ, Joseph Smith and I'm telling you the problems of the world seem insignificant by the time we are done. Its possible to feel the Spirit when you are sweaty and breathless and on mile 6 if you are lucky enough to run with someone like Karlie.
Over Thanksgiving break my boys conspired. I call it conspiring because they sit in their room having hushed conversations, scribbling things down and then they take the car out for unsaid supplies. They spent a whole afternoon making blow guns and shooting them into homemade targets. I had to keep standing by the back door to watch them, forcing myself to enjoy the moment instead of worrying about the sand in the hour glass and how its running out on my time with these two little boys and their conspiring.
Is it always shocking to a Mama heart when little girls are all of a sudden BEAUTIFUL instead of cute and womanish instead of girlish? No less than 10 times in the last month Brylee and I have been mistaken for each other--she's growing up. In church Brylee likes to snuggle into me and if I could I would snuggle there all day with her. Melts my heart this girl does.
The sweetest sisters who ever were...I love that they share a chair to eat breakfast in the morning. I love that they have two beds but sleep in one. I love that one does not go anywhere without the other. I love that they put all the pet shops in the bath with them. I love that they can be feisty and ornery and bossy with each other and then figure it all out on their own. I love that they are the sweetest sisters that ever were and it is so good to be their Mamma.
I am convinced that the smallest details of life become beautiful and joyful and easy when we let go of the fluff and focus on what matters.
Spiritual light will enlighten your mind, bring healing to your hear and joy to your days. ~Dieter F. Uchdorf