These four boys of mine live life with vigour; which is defined as intensity, strength, and substantial energy or force. Yes, yes, and YES. Sometimes that vigour is overwhelming, please refer back to the intensity part of the definition… That vigour has resulted in two snapped boards in the bunkbed, a broken shelf, a hole in the door, 3 broken stools, and a clock which lost half of it’s numbers behind the glass because it was dodgeballed. There was also the time that the bathroom towel rack was used as a pull-up bar. For one pull up. Obviously.
True, it can hold hands intimately with destruction, but, if properly and diligently channeled, that vigour can turn into great things. Enter the job of the mom. No big deal right?
As I am writing this, Noah is crafting an unsafe and very unstable bridge out of the board we got from the dumpster drop zone, (read: treasure thrift zone) which we creatively wedge in the patio door, to keep children on the inside… I also bet you four whole dollars that he’s going to invite his baby brother to be the first passenger to cross that bridge.
Many people will often watch my boys for a few moments, shake their heads, and then ask, “How do you do it?” I usually answer with, “I barely bathe them.. we eat a lot of orange cheesy noodles, and my husband is the best ever.”
But, I can easily get into a slump where I start asking myself the same question, usually when I’m hungry and tired, and feeling an overall sense of depletion. Or we’ve been yelled at by grumpy strangers on the street for no good reason, to “Stop skipping!” It’s during that very time that I have to keep my mind focused on what is truth.
The truth is, how can I not do it? I want to do it. It’s just that things of great worth require great effort. Ugh. Let’s pull my socks up and try again.
I want to be a great mom and a patient mom, and a memory making mom, realistically I’m shooting for 80% of the time, that’s a decent passing grade. And the truth is, that I can do it because I am supposed to do this very thing. It’s my current God given assignment, that he has equipped and prepared me for. And these precious boys with their unpredictable vigour are not even my own. They are the Lord’s, and I have to just keep plugging along offering my best work. Even if they DO keep breaking all of my things with their pillow fights and ninja star throwing contests and wrestling matches.
They are a good work in progress.
So am I. I’d never been a mom before I had all of these babies.
Years back I worked in a tutorial room with super high energy students (most of them boys) who had some learning disabilities, and definitely trouble sitting still ever. They were hyper and a little crazy, and yet oh so funny, and boisterous and filled with vigour and a zest for life, and I still treasure that time spent at my job, that didn’t really feel like a job at all. The best part is, I absolutely did not have a clue that one day I would have four super high energy boys of my own bouncing around my house, and that I would also be homeschooling them.
But God. He knew. He knows all the things, and he takes the time to prepare us even when we don’t even realize that the preparation is happening. Nothing is wasted. Ever.
I often look at my young men squished around our table, (which also incidentally came from the dumpster treasure zone, best back ally ever) and I call them my little olive shoots. Because just look at this. Right here in Psalm 128:3 it says, “Your wife will be like a fruitful grapevine (Remember, the loose translation would add, ‘aiming for 80% of the time…’) flourishing within your home. Your children will be like vigorous young olive trees as they sit around your table.
There it is again.
Beautiful intensity and strength, determination and energy. Channel it. Fuel it. See it as the amazing characteristic that it is. Then simply sweep up the broken glass, drop the broken stools at the dumpster, and get back to your good work.