Yesterday was one of those days. I don't know what really sets them apart, but I just wake up feeling funny. All day things went fine. I had a doctor's appointment, good report. I went to work at the office, no hang ups there. Then it was time to go home, uh oh. I realized I didn't want to go home. What exactly awaited me there? My four girls had been home alone since the morning and I just knew I'd be walking into disaster central. Sure enough, trash overflowing the can, apple core on the office desk, unfinished laundry. Now before you begin to think that all I do is complain, the first thing I did before I set in to put every thing to rights, was just sit down with the little tiny. Emari followed me into my room, sucking her thumb and twiddling her hair like she does and requested to do my hair. Of all my babies, she's the one who loves my hair. She sits on my lap and holds it or rubs it on her face. With that moment I gave her I was reminded once more how precious these times are. My house will always be dirty, there is no escaping that, but it will not always house tiny people who just want to be close to me. They are going to grow up and live in houses that they have to keep clean without me there. I will eventually come home to one that doesn't have someone eagerly awaiting my return to make everything right again and then in some weird and sad way I will look back at these frustrating times and wish they had lasted just a little longer.
Don't know if its the nesting instinct kicking in early, or the fact that I'm stuck at home more days than not that's got me riled up in an organizational dither. All I know is that the more I organize the more I realize just how hopeless it is. I love opening a closet and not having to worry about things falling on me. I love finding things were they should be. I absolutely adore falling asleep at night and not hearing the nagging of all the things that should be done, but aren't. Such is not the life for a mommy of almost six. Back in the early years when it was just Tony and Becca, things were simpler. Two kid rooms, two toy boxes, two dressers. Simplicity at its finest. Did I appreciate it, no. Enter Serena, who even in her earliest stages just couldn't be content to play with her own things. Suddenly everything was common property except for special things which had to be placed in an undisclosed location under surveillance at all times, lest they be tampered with and destroyed by tiny hands. Every couple of months I go through jags where I work through each room separating and folding and organizing. This time I'm at week two, week one was completed while my three girls were on vacation in Kentucky. When I take a break to catch my breath and grab a snack I run across various items that were part of the process, already in disarray. Or even worse I come downstairs only to find every dish I own in the sink. I so envy other women who can keep it all together and maintain a well-organized household, but I am learning that as for me and my house, well, its just not happenin'.
My morning started out as usual today, with a cup of coffee and my Bible. I'm reading, or in all honesty, attempting to read, the entire Bible through once more this year. Today was filled with some stockpiling of supplies for the construction of the temple, some reminders from Paul that the Bible wasn't written for everyone else, but for our own instruction, and a Psalm praising the Lord for His pure words. Okay, but what really reached out and grabbed my attention today was the Proverb.
Proverbs 19:14 (The Message)
14 House and land are handed down from parents,
but a congenial spouse comes straight from God.
Being the nerd that I am I looked it up on the internet and found this definition:
con·gen·ial (kn-jnyl) adj.
1. Having the same tastes, habits, or temperament; sympathetic.
2. Of a pleasant disposition; friendly and sociable: a congenial host.
3. Suited to one's needs or nature; agreeable: congenial surroundings.
Of course, I'm asking myself, "Am I the congenial spouse that was delivered from God to my husband?" Maybe there's nobody out there who asks this, but I do. Sometimes with all the things I am striving to be I neglect the most important one. Its something special to claim coming straight from the Lord as a gift to someone. That's what God calls children and yet not everyone accepts them as such. But as it is in my power to maintain my worth as a gift, I really want to hold fast to that. Breaking down that definition I can see an easy fit into the first part. Joshua and I have been married for 14 years. Many of our tastes and habits are identical by now. We've kind of melded into each other and can't really remember which one of us brought what to the table of individual tastes in the beginning. That makes for ease in decorating and food prep. Superficial things really when you think about it. Now look at part 2. Ooooh, pleasant disposition, yikes. Friendly and sociable? Good habits for a pastor's wife to have but not the first words you would use to describe me. Character flaws are immediately apparent. Now on to part 3. It really brings to mind the description of Eve in the Garden of Eden. She was made just for Adam, as a help mate for him. She was fashioned by the hands of God from the same material as Adam. Actually she was made from Adam, and yet she still got him into trouble, didn't she? In the end we come to the conclusion that while some parts of being a congenial spouse come more naturally, others require work. Day by day, it is ultimately my decision to remain a good gift for my husband with all of God's help, of course.
Since Monday the kids and I have been working feverishly to get the house clean. Every room that has a carpet has been thoroughly gone over. "What dignitary is coming to visit you to warrant such cleaning?" you may ask. No one is coming to visit, we just really need to get our carpet cleaned. With a large family who entertains as much as we do I really should get it done more often, but the preparation is just so exhausting. Maintenance is easy for the downstairs as my husband and I live down there and generally we don't lower ourselves to throwing candy wrappers under the bed or dropping kernels of popcorn into every crevice in our room. The children however dwell upstairs and dad and I rarely have to venture up there. I make the trek more frequently to drop things off in the kids rooms. However, dad had to do some work up there in Tony's room this weekend, and boy it just wasn't good. He couldn't find the floor to walk through the girls room. What he was doing in there I still don't know, but the result was instantaneous. Instead of carpet, he found a sea of clothing and other girl items. Cleaning promptly insued and we have the victory as we have found the carpet and it indeed needs a very good cleaning.