Monday, April 8, 2013

to be Mama

I wiped a hundred salty tears and gave a thousand kisses;
At least two noses wiped snot on me—not within my wishes.
I made breakfast, lunch, (and thirteen snacks?) and now dinner’s on the stove.
To Target, Costco, Trader Joes my mommy van I drove.
My hands are raw from doing dishes, yet there’s still more to be washed;
Like endless training of the two-year-old who keeps saying “Oh, my gosh!”
I painted pictures, built dragon caves, cleaned pee in every room.
And caught myself saying crazy things, like, “You don’t deserve to use the broom!”
When did cleaning become a “privilege” for them, but for me my daily  “plight”?
I guess when vacuum attachments are special swords for a special dragon fight.
I folded laundry, changed twelve diapers, then refolded stacks once more—
Sneaky boys stealing laundry baskets to creep like turtles across the floor.
Sometimes I feel like a zookeeper, trying to keep animals in their cage;
Please tell me I’m not raising monkeys and climbing is just a stage.

Then for one moment my world was perfect: 
Brothers building towers, babe nursing at my breast.

But then I blink…
And one boy throws a block and the other boy screams 
And the baby bites me with his two tiny chompers so I’m screaming, too, 
Which makes the baby wail and I just want to rewind time 
And hit the pause button on that one precious moment of serenity and sweetness 
And leave my life frozen there 

But I can’t.

Because I’m a mama, and my boys are growing fast.
And these crazy chaos days feel loooong, but surely they won’t last.
Soon, little boys who want to kiss me with peanut butter faces
Will be replaced by teenagers with scruffy chins and braces.
The little arms that reach up high and around my neck squeeze tight
Will soon grow manly muscles and sprout tall past mama’s height.

So please, dear Jesus, help me to stop and savor these crazy days,
Help me to remember every boyish giggle and adoring baby gaze.
Help me to delight in all their growing—each funny noise and silly word,
Help me to put aside my to-do lists so each child feels he’s heard.
Help me to look past crumbs and milk drips to see the gifts and not the mess,
Help me to find more words of praise and honor, and criticize much less.
But mostly, gracious God, help me to turn to you each moment of each hour
To find wisdom, patience, strength, and grace—to be Mama by your power.


Michele said...

Oh Becky this is beautiful. I am sitting here wiping tears and looking for tissues! Through the wall behind my computer I hear my 22 year old son studying for his Mechanical Engineering class. Suddenly you took me back to when he was 2 months old and cut his first tooth - that made nursing fun! I love your heart for your children and your heart for God! Thank you so much for sharing, I can't wait to read more!

Becky said...

Thank you, Michelle! It's hard to imagine my boys ever being 22, but I know it that day will be hear before I know it. Thank you for encouraging us young mamas!!

Abigail Raymond said...

Such a good poem. I thoroughly enjoyed every line. You are a great mother, Becky, and I hope to enjoy every precious moment with my little one as well. Every second really is a gift! Thank you for putting it all in perspective again as we tend to forget sometimes.

Becky said...

Thanks, Abigail! I feel like as mamas of little ones especially, we need one another to understand the hard moments, celebrate the fun ones, and also help keep our perspective in check like you said. Thanks for reading!

Mindy Rogers said...

So much wishing I heard you read this on open mic night. It is so beautiful and just reminder I needed today as my little pull each other's hair and sniffle runny noses and cling to my jeans...which I have worn for the past week without a wash. PRAISE HIM!