"Education is not the filling of a pail but the lighting of a fire." William Butler Yeats

Friday, April 12, 2013

I came home from town the other day to a house full of children and an unflushed toilet full of mess. Of course, no one would claim it. I wondered whether or not the q-tip that was also in the bowl would make it safely through the turns and bends, and what the chances were that it would get stuck and cause a greater problem than that of accepting what had to be done and sticking my hand in that bowl. I pondered my position. 

The glamour of motherhood, if there had ever been any to begin with was swallowed up in the plastic bag I wrapped tightly around my arm. 

You see,  I have this longing within to be great. I want to be super at something. I want to achieve and do and grow and be

As the day wore on and I went about my responsibilities God breathed wisdom into my mind: Maybe my greatness will be that of my children's. Greatness is in everyday ordinaries.

It is in the preparing of a grilled cheese lunch.

It is in the putting of a camera in little hands and seeing life through her eyes, her world.

It is in the making of lemon Jell-o.

It is in the strokes of a paint brush.

It is in the workbooks, the math, and even in the frustration.

(Tate is attempting to "disarm" me with his "wand" as I attempt to instruct him in math. Expelliarmus!)

It is in the cutting of oranges . . .

 and the folding of dishcloths.

My greatness may never be awarded or noticed. It will not be in fame or fortune. Instead, I have the opportunity to be the catalyst in the lives of these children who call me mom. I am the cheerleader, the catapult. I am the one on the sidelines who calls out their names, who jumps for joy at their victories, and praises their attempts. I am the one who wipes the tears and comforts the sadness. These children will grow in the knowledge that their mom is quite often a big ol' mess. They will see me at my worst, as well as my best. Through me they will come to understand that life is hard and hearts can hurt so bad. They will become acquainted with perseverance. They will learn to pick themselves up and to be of good cheer. They will hear, over and over, as long as I live that NOTHING is impossible, and to never say can't. And even though life does not always look like the vision we had planned it is beautiful beyond measure in its imperfection. Greatness is in never giving up, even though you feel a failure. My greatness will live in the hearts of my children. I cannot imagine a purpose more noble nor a greatness that is bigger than that.

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