Sunday, January 24, 2010

"The Move"...... Lesson Learned

When AJ and I first learned he received the job here in Texas, we were blessed with 4 weeks before his starting date at the new job. Though we are not fond of renting, we felt this would be in the best interest for us at the time so we could learn the area before purchasing a place. So graciously, our friends, William and Taryn, offered to keep the kids one weekend while we came to house hunt and get a feel for the area. Nothing was found, so as we returned home we discussed the different options of what to do. It was most clear we did not want our family to be split, with AJ in Texas working and us back in Louisiana. So the week before his starting date, we made reservations at a hotel. We would go as a family for a week, while AJ was at work, the children and I were to look for a place to rent.

"Are you crazy? You are going to stay in a hotel with FIVE kids for a week?"

"I would rather be without my husband for a week than stay in a hotel with kids."

"Are you out of you mind?"

"Better you than me!"

These were just a few comments I received.

To be honest, when I thought about staying in the hotel room with 5 kids, I cringed.

I knew I had to come up with a plan. For my sanity.

So thus, I started jotting ideas down of what we could do for this long week.

Make tents.
Play "Old Maid."

These were my plans.

So thus, we headed out and I was ready to "fight the good fight" knowing my week was going to be hard.

Well, one week turned into 2, which turned into 3, and eventually ended up to almost two months.

During these two months, I learned a lot. But the biggest thing I learned was...I enjoy my kids.

Say what? I am just learning this?...Unfortunately, yes.

You see, being a wife, "Keeper of the Home" (which includes 3 meals a day, laundry, bathrooms, stepping on and picking up toys, constant training of children, dog trainer, window cleaner...sometimes...floor sweeper, and more.), a homeschooler, active servant in my church, friend, daughter.

With all of these "so important"things, I lost my focus of what a true mother should be.

Sad? Yes.

All of my "duties" took front place over my children. Isn't this what a good wife and mother is all about? Being able to manage everything and still have a clean house?

Sadly, my kids would frustrate me because I was trying to get something done. I did not have time to play 2 games because I had a pile of laundry piled so high I couldn't see the washing machine. I didn't have time to play hide and seek because I was meal planning or scrubbing a toilet.

Then came our life at the hotel.

No need to make breakfast, it was in the lobby waiting for me. I had a "personal maid" each day to clean our bathroom, make our bed, dust, etc. Laundry would be saved for our weekend at home, which was also used to cook meals for the week so we did not have to eat out.

With this extra free time, I had the chance to "do" things with my kids.

We went to different parks. Colored together. Played "Bible Tag", made up games, tickled one another, observed bugs, snuggled, sang songs, stare contests, read books.

I learned that my kids are fun.

Wow. Sitting here now brings tears to my eyes.

The time I missed with my kids for "so called" "duties"?

Sure, I have responsibilities in the house, but isn't a top priority, as a mother, to nurture and love my kids for the Lord?

Work will always be there, but my kids will not. They are growing up quickly. I will have young men and ladies in my house soon. I would be foolish to let this time pass by and not to enjoy my children.

My children are precious. They are fun. I enjoy spending time with them. I enjoy getting down on the floor and playing "doggy", or going outside to play "Catch the Cow, Cowboy".

Learning this lesson was the best thing for me. I thank God very often for our long stay in the hotel. To be honest, I was sad when it was over. To not have my precious children not in the same room with me at all times, in close quarters, is sad. I miss the closeness it brings. And the children miss it also. Just tonight I had one ask if they could "move in with mommy and daddy".

Words will never express the gratitude I have for my Lord, Jesus, for bringing me to this place of showing me how precious my time with the children are.

Though I have returned to my normal "duties", I now devote time each day to have fun with my children.

I still have my moments of "losing sight" of what God taught me. I get busy in my day to day activities, get frustrated for "them messing up MY plan", tell them I am busy and "it will have to wait". But at the end of the day, as I lay my tired body down in bed, the Lord gently reminds me of HIS lesson taught to me. I am not perfect at this, but I shall continue to try my hardest to be the mom they deserve, the mom God created me to be.

I spend time with my children not just for them, but also for me, as a mommy, who loves and enjoys these gifts from God.

So, to the comments I received:

"Are you crazy? You are going to stay in a hotel with FIVE kids for a week?" Yes, and I would do it for seven more.

"Are you out of you mind?"
Nope, just a mom who loves her children.

"Better you than me!" I agree.


I am proud to be your Mommy.


Unknown said...

Two thumbs up (and one paw from Hank)

Amy said...

What a great lesson to learn and share with others. I find myself in that spot "busy" . BTW, I love the group picture at the bottom of the post:)

Unknown said...

Thanks for leading us in the right direction...I love the picture at the should put that as your facebook profile pic...and get it printed out and hang it in your new house...then it will remind you of this lesson learned :)

Anonymous said...

wow! after a very rough homeschooling day you've given me lots to pray and think about. I have been so stressed out with missed math problems and incomplete assignments. I'm going to praise the Lord that I've been given this opportunity to spend soooo much time with my kiddos, focus on heart matters, and enjoy this journey. Thanks!

Liz said...

Dear Sweet Christine, you are so right. Weekly, and sometimes daily, I wish mine were little again. They were so sweet when they were small. Don't get me wrong, they are still sweet, (most of the time, haha) but they have their own lives now. That is very good, but I would love to just have one day back with them when they were my babies!

Cinnamon said...

Thanks for stopping by for a visit on our blog~

Your post is incredibly sweet. I have young ones and old ones. When I look back at photos when my older ones were little I smile. My heart longs for those days again. Then I realize I have new little ones that I can play with, enjoy, and love. Looking at them with eyes that don't want to forget the precious things in life. It i so much easier for me to put aside "have to's" and sit with my children when they need me. Or to stop everything and hold my littles guy who isn't feeling well.

Praise God He took on that wonderful journey~

~Blessings to you and your adorable family~

p.s I like that bottom picture too. It's a keeper :-)

Jenn said...

Oh, oh, oh. The truths that you have written in this post. I'm sure most of us should have been wearing steel toed boots for this one!! What a great lesson learned and a great lesson to share with others. Hubby and I just last night were talking about priorities and such and where things should be in our lives. Thank you for sharing your heart. And I am soooo with Candi....frame that picture. It is awesome!!

Tammy Cloud said...

Love this pic.

Thanks for stopping by my blog. Come by anytime.

momto9 said...

What a beautiful post!!! I feel the same way!

Kristy said...

What a great lesson!
After Hurricane Katrina, we were forced into a hotel for quite a while - with no place to live. Beside the stess and sadness I felt, it was amazing to realize that as long as you have family - you have the most important "things" in life. With little possessions left, and no home, we could make a home wherever we were - even with 5 of us cramped into a one room hotel.

Taryn said...

Man Christine! I was trying to update the twins 1st year calendar just yesterday... because I feel like time is just slipping by. How can we capture it? {tears are in my eyes now}

The Lord is so good! What an awesome God we serve! Praise the Lord for what He's taught you. And praise Him for giving you the ability to articulate it in such a touching way! You are a beautiful women Christine ~ inside and out!

I'm off to play with my kids!

Lori said...

amen and amen and amen. Thank you for the reminder!

Mountain Mama said...

Thanks for stopping by our blog. Nice to "meet" you via blogworld. Your family is beautiful. You are a blessed mama!

Great post!

Mountain Mama said...

Thanks for all the comments. I check in on you often to see if you have updated and to see how things are going with "the move" and the hotel living. Hope all is well.