Lent is a reflective time. While my new discipline of no personal electronic devices after dinner is not going swimmingly, it has allowed for moments of beautiful reflection and observations with my family. It makes it worth continuing in the battle to detach.
1) I LOVE watching my kids play together. They are innately sweet to each other, and make each other laugh already. Sure, I have to remind Baby J that he can't pull his sister's hair (and I'm guessing I will continue that reminder for years to come), and keep an eye on Li'l G when she gets overeager to help Baby J crawl - no, pushing him actually does NOT make him go faster. Nonetheless, it is a beautiful thing to watch them learn to share and play together - they really get such JOY out of it.
The way they look at each other with sibling love is not something I could possibly teach - it is just that love that God has placed in their hearts shared without abandon (though sometimes there are screaming and tears). My iPhone doesn't compare in any way, shape or form.
2) Hubbers is a sucker. We keep saying there are way too many toys in the house. Yet, every so often, daddy walks in with a new one because he saw it and knew Li'l G would love it. He's right - she does. He's still a sucker. True confessions time - so am I. For him, it was Jake and the Pirates ball for her to play with. With me, it was Dora and Minnie Mouse socks. Now if only we would see things that didn't involve marketing for television shows that she'd like...
3) I am completely and wholeheartedly looking forward to Easter crafts and festivities with Li'l G. I can't wait to dye eggs, color and go on an Easter Egg hunt. I am already imagining the excitement and joy on her face (and dreading the mean mom "don't make a mess" face I will likely get when she gets overzealous with the colors). Lord, help me to not care about the mess (or make darn sure I prevent as much as possible and have us all in disposable clothing)!
4) With one kid under our belt, I find that we are often comparing Baby J's milestones to Li'l G's. I have to remind myself every time how damaging that habit can become. Li'l G hears everything, and not once do I want her to hear us say she was slow, or that J is more advanced. He is in many ways more advanced with motor skills than she was. She, however, talked much sooner, which has proven to mean she won't stop talking now, of course. It's just different, and we need to be sure we are ever so careful as we marvel at the differences to not compare them as good and bad, but simply different.
|Playing is HARD work!|
5) I love watching the kids learn and grow. How much fun that I, Mama McCormick, was able to help teach Li'l G to catch a ball. Yes, me. Athletically challenged, little old me. Now, she's no pro, but she is getting the hang of it, especially with that Jake ball that daddy bought her the other day. I think I was more excited than she was. Which leads me to another observation - my excitement for her is contagious. She reflects my reactions. I best be starting to pay attention more closely to how I am responding to her, and make sure I am responding to her and have my nose out of my computer or phone or tv or (insert distraction here). Baby J is not catching quite yet, but he is now pulling himself up to stand on EVERYTHING, stable object or not. He even stood on his own the other day for a second or two. He pulled himself up, then turned around to see something his sister was doing, stepped back, and then realized he was standing without holding something, and sat his little tooshy down. That boy is going to walk far sooner than I'm ready to see, I think. Hubbers says Easter. I'm not sure I disagree, but we'll see.
6) Parenting sometimes makes me feel a little bipolar. I don't intend to make light of the disease - I have good friends who suffer with it and it is difficult. I just don't know another word to describe how I feel a lot of days. One minute, the little have me roasting mad, such that if I were in cartoon form steam would likely be coming out of my ears, and then seconds later they are sweet as pie and I'm in love from my head to my toes. What word would you use for that? Makes me quite crazy really. I do love those nutty littles.
7) I do love social media, Facebook specifically. I've been able to connect with family I haven't seen or talked to in over 15 years, and feel as though we can be part of each others' lives even half a world away. Most of them are in India, and I didn't grow up with them down the street or even a quick plane ride away. It is so expensive to travel halfway across the world, that I likely only saw them a total of 6 times my whole life. Facebook makes it possible for us to now, as adults, really connect and keep in touch in a way that we were never able as children. It's as though a little part of me I never knew was missing appeared. In other ways, social media allows the opportunity to take our hands and feet global without leaving our seat. We can encourage, inspire and act with the help of others around the world to spread the Good News and to help those who are struggling. We can be present in real time as events unfold. We no longer need to be by-standers. The caveat is that we need to get out of our seats and use our hands and feet in concrete terms where we are planted and where we have the privilege to travel also. Screen time (and FaceTime) never replaces real live face time. Computers cannot give an embrace. Computers cannot serve a meal. Computers cannot lift their prayers. We have to do that in a very physical way as well.
And that's all for this edition! (Notice how I got the hands and feet in there? Yeah, it was a little contrived.)