The past few weeks have been quite a challenge. Cold, snowy weather has had us packed up like sardines. Cabin fever has officially hit my household. Between the whining and fighting and a lack of vitamin D, I’ve been feeling a bit bleak, to say the least.
I’ve noticed that I’ve been a bit more snippy and easily frustrated with my boys. The endless requests for snacks and toys scattered throughout the house have been wearing on my nerves. A couple of days ago I was carrying the heavyweight of dishes, laundry, and dirty floors when my 6-year-old started begging me to play with him. When I turned around and saw his big blue eyes, the fact that I hadn’t smiled for at least 2 days hit me like a punch in the gut.
I do not want to be that mom. I do not want to be the mom who doesn’t smile and can’t enjoy her kids because the housework is too overwhelming. I’m all for doing the dishes and tidying up the house. It’s important for our mental and physical health and it’s also an important life skill for our children to learn. But, it’s not everything.
I looked at that 6-year-olds sparkling blue eyes and suddenly realized how quickly time is slipping through my hands. I wanted to make an excuse. My excuse would say it’s winters fault and I just don’t like winter so I’m going to let it make me grumpy. But then, I remembered the blog post I wrote Why Winter is Worth Embracing. And I had to decide. Winter draws us in. It calls us to stillness and restoration. Would I believe it, or not?
Either I can choose to let gray, gloomy winter days make me miserable or I can see it as an opportunity. I have an opportunity to play, to laugh, and to spend all day in my pajamas building Lego creations. The presence of my family is not a nuisance. Years from now, I want to look back on these days without regret. I want to remember the giggles of my boys while we wrestle on the living room floor. I want to remember feeling joy and peace and lightness of heart.
Each moment of my life leads to more moments, then days, then years. It all adds up to a single life defined by how I spent my days. I hope to spend them pouring out love with a joyful heart. I hope to make memories that my children will cherish even as adults.
Mama, it’s okay to have fun. Do the dishes, run the vacuum and fold the clothes. All of that matters too but don’t forget to smile. Your babies love to see you happy. Show them happy.