A jumbled pile of tennis shoes in the foyer. Cheerios in front of the pantry door. An iPod face down on the sofa, inches away from a balled up Dora the Explorer blanket....and that was all before I even reached the stairs. Sound familiar?
Once upon a time, I would follow my children around the house picking up toy after spilled snack after clothing item. Now that they're older, I pick up less. I mind less. I never thought about why...until the other day.
Not too long ago, I had a day off. I still had to get up early and get hubby and kids on their way because let's face it, a day off doesn't eliminate the hustle and bustle of your morning routine. Anyway, I got everyone out the door and stood in my foyer looking at all the traces of my kids' morning. This day, the presence of their belongings carelessly tossed throughout the house punctuated their absence. An absence that will one day be permanent. I let that sink in.
Being a mom is a lot of work. A lot of demands on your time, energy, and brainpower. Do you ever get so caught up in maintaining and keeping the train moving that you forget to stop and appreciate those natural, built-in imperfections of life? Well I do. Typically I would have breathed in, let out a long, controlled sigh, mentally ran through my to-do list, and got to work putting my house back in order. But today I found joy in the mess. The mess that says my children are here....making memories and leaving their mark.
Today, the mess will stay.