Thursday, October 24, 2013

From Messes to S's...

Lately, I've been dealing with control issues.

Or a lack of control issues, if you might.

My children run around crazy, my eyebrows are out of control and my house is a wreck.  And while the "get it together sister" part of me is yearning to tighten the reigns and go to all ends to have control, the "they're only young once" other part of me is urging myself to enjoy the journey.  

All this being said, I've been in a mass cleaning and purging stage while I move our belongings back in from the garage, where they were stored as the floors were getting done.  Boxes of items we don't need have been sent to the thrift store and I've actually been thankful for the process because I don't think it would have otherwise gotten done.  

When they replaced the floors, they had to tear out the subfloor, leaving a thick layer of dust on anything standing - blinds, curtains, baseboards, pictures left on the walls, etc.  The only reason why I'm telling you this is to paint the picture that I've kind of been on a cleaning frenzy around this joint.

So you can imagine my disbelief when I walked into the entryway yesterday and discovered writing on the wall.  In crayon.  Blue crayon.

Now, let me pause again and tell you that all of my children are smack on the edge of big developmental stages.  Caleb is trying with all his might to talk.  Elizabeth is beginning to go from rebellious to helpful and want responsibility.  And Rachel is exploding in creativity.  She really has started to color well and is wanting to make letters randomly.  

Rachel, more than the others, is very sensory driven.  She clings to a blankie with soft edges, especially when she's upset.  She is the only one that bites her nails and toe nails (which both grosses me out and makes me jealous of her flexibility).  And lately, she's taken to picking all the leather off our couch, which drives us crazy but no one's been able to catch her in the act yet.  

However, this was all very far from my mind when I was trying desperately to get my house back together yesterday around 5 p.m.  It had been a long day and the kids were running crazy around the house, since it was too cool to go outside with their drippy noses.  Dinner was on the stove and I knew Scott would be on his way home soon.  I had wiped down surfaces, dusted the living room and was just finishing up the floors when I saw the brand new art work on the wall... in blue.  

I knew it was Rachel, as we had already been down this road with Elizabeth, and I began to blow my top at my three-year-old.  Of course, she denied it and cowered under her blanket and I felt all my control issues bubble to the surface.  

Your house never looks put together.  You're just not a good homemaker.
Your children can't follow the rules.  You're just not a good mom.
Your husband is going to think you have no control of your house.  You're just not a good wife.
and even
You're taking out your frustrations on your three-year-old!!  You really have no self-control.

And while the true battle of control was raging inside me, Elizabeth walked up behind me.
"Mom!!  Look!!  Rachel made an S!!"

And she had.  There in the middle of the "art" was a perfectly scrawled blue my entrance way.

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.  2 Corinthians 12:9  

I pulled Rachel on my lap and apologized for getting upset and asked her if she would make all her letters on paper so that I could keep them forever.  Her tears dried up in an instant as she jumped down and ran off to do just that.  And once again, I was thankful for pint-sized grace that forgives me quicker than I deserve.   I was thankful for Elizabeth's sweet heart and gentle reminder of what was really important.  I was thankful even for my control issues because they keep me looking to the One who is so much stronger and has it all together so that I don't have to. 

And I was also thankful for the big box of Magic Erasers that was on sale last month at Costco...

Happy Thursday, friends!


  1. That brought tears to my eyes. Thank you for sharing your inspirations, Annie. Love ya.

  2. Thank you!! I too have these same issues. I also have a toe nail biter.