"Up through the night with the baby. Why is she screaming bloody murder? This is the last time I go in there. Blessed silence. She gave up.The alarm goes off way too early. Can it really be morning already? Didn't I just go to sleep? Baby Girl is cranky like you wouldn't believe. Screaming if I put her down, screaming if her brothers look at her, screaming just because she can. Could it be from her shots? Her leg is hot and swollen. Time for tylenol. Hurry downstairs and get breakfast for everyone. Why do they have to eat breakfast everyday? Ugh, I haven't packed Samuel's lunch yet. Their bellies are never full. Trying to throw worms in the chickies' mouths, trying to feed myself, throwing food in his lunchbox, watching the clock. Welcome to morning.
Rush everyone out to the car at 8:11. We're running late again. Everyone's strapped in. Driving down the street, entering school traffic. Too late to walk him up to school, now I have to drop him off in the car line. He rushes out the door and runs as fast as his legs will carry him, backpack thumping against his back. He's gotten so big but in this moment he looks so small. I catch a glimpse of him sliding through the door before the car line moves on. He's gone for the day, safe and happy.
Off to the store. We're out of milk again. Zakkai realizes we're going the wrong way and points it out. He's my new backseat driver, telling us when to stop and go, watching the cars all around us. We make it to the store and head straight for the bathroom. He's got a bladder the size of a red potato. He helps me drive the cart since I've pulled a shoulder muscle. Always my big helper. The store is quiet this time of day. Easy to get around. Got our milk, fruit and cereal, looking and browsing but not buying! Zakkai pouts because I won't buy him recipe cards and we talk about being thankful for what he has at home. Quick run through the bank for laundry quarters and it's off for home.
The train tracks are being fixed and special machines are working nearby. It captures Z's interest and he watches with observant eyes, coming in periodically to report to me. Eliana is fussy, hanging on my legs, looks like it'll be another early nap day. She's down for the count. I think I'll finish spring cleaning the kitchen while Zakkai watches the train machines. He comes inside 64 times to show me his drawings of the equipment. I'm impressed with his skills! I finish scrubbing the lower cabinets and the microwave, the baseboards, the refrigerator. How did everything get so dirty? The clock is ticking, it's lunchtime already. Zakkai reminds me many times:) He eats his lunch, I wake up Eliana, we go off to preschool. As we're getting out of the car, Z peels off his sweatshirt and I realize for the first time that he's wearing the same shirt as yesterday. I try to peel a sticker off the front but he claps his hand over it in protection as it starts to tear. He hugs me goodbye and only later do I realize that he stuck the sticker on my back! What a silly boy.
Eliana and I eat lunch. My friend comes over to hang out. It's good to talk to another adult, a friend. I do it so rarely that sometimes I talk too much. I always tell myself I won't. But I always do. Soon it's time to pick up the boys. They are overjoyed at the sight of our good friend sitting in the car. It makes their day. We spill through the doorway of home, loud, boisterous, full of life. Snacks are doled out, homework is finished, the boys disappear outside, looking for friends to play with. My friend and I can have conversation in peace now. Eliana plays with a puzzle nearby. Suddenly, over the background sound of a train rumbling by, my ever-alert mommy ears hear the sound of screaming. It's not a happy scream but a scream of pain. I drop everything and head quickly outside, only to discover that Zakkai has had a bicycle collision with the neighbor boy and has been injured. It takes our friend, who just happens to be a nurse (!!) and I at least 15 minutes to get him calmed down. He sits between us on the couch, nursing his bruised swollen knuckle and knee under Toy Story band aids. We finally coax a smile out of him and before we know it, he's back outside playing. The resilience of kids.
Eliana fusses like an alarm clock, dinner is ready. So glad I put in the extra work for a crockpot meal tonight! Dishing up dinner. It's a new recipe and it's looking good. Stuffed peppers. Eliana eats half of one, the boys turn up their noses, suspicious at first but soon gobble up most of it. I know Ben will love it when he gets home late tonight. We have to say goodbye to our friend. The boys say they miss her 2 minutes after she walks out the door. We don't have company often enough!
It's time for baths. I get my cute naked girl in the tub. The door opens and Samuel comes in, tears forming in his eyes. He throws himself in my arms and chokes out that he's sorry for being disrespectful to me this afternoon. I'm so thankful that his heart is soft. I tell him I forgive him and I'm proud of him for having the courage to come to me on his own. We let it go. We move on.
All 3 in the bath for a few minutes. Eliana thinks it's fun to have some buddies in the tub. Wishing I had my camera nearby. I get her out and wrap her in her big cozy towel. Lotion, pjs, story, prayer and snuggling. Soon she's tucked in her bed, her eyes drifting shut before the door even closes. Boys are cleaned and teeth are brushed. We pile on beanbag chairs in their room for story time. Two boys tucked close on either side of me, listening to the story. I catch the smiles on their faces at the funny parts. So glad they love to read. They climb in their beds and I tuck them in. A few more questions, more things to tell me. "Why do we have hair on our heads? Why does it take so long for cats to get dry after a bath? What if we never had to sleep and God made us with a sensor that would wake us up if we started to fall asleep?" Amazed at their curious brains. Kisses and hugs and wishes for sweet dreams. Their door is closed. Another day gone. One blends into another.
I write it down so I won't forget. The little moments that make each day special.