Friday, May 6, 2016


Well, it's been quiet around here lately. But don't get "here" I just mean this blog, not our actual lives. No, life isn't quiet at all. In fact, I'm not sure I could find a word to less accurately describe our lives right now. Maybe orderly. Or relaxing. Or anything in the thesaurus next to calm.

Don't worry- I'm not going to go on a rant about how busy we are, it's just that life right now is pretty hectic, pretty loud, and pretty full. It's all very good stuff ('s a lot of very good stuff, with some tantrums, messes and exhaustion layered on top) but it's not been very compatible with blogging. I love creating, and I still have the urge to spend time in this space, but lately it's been all I can do just to keep up with regular life, let alone the documentation traditions I've started (most notably: monthly updates for Miller, and periodic quips from the girls). Then there's my commitment to Thrive Moms, plus my one second everyday project. So there is still some creative expression and memory keeping happening, but there hasn't been quite as much time or space for "written processing" as I'd like.

It's easy for me to get down on myself, frustrated that I'm not being more productive, or better at prioritizing time to for creative pursuits. I mean, I seem to find plenty of time for Netflix binging so I can't really use a "too busy" excuse in good conscience. But at the same time, it's also fair to say that while I've been neglecting the writing recently, I actually have been focusing on the doing (and even more important: the being.) I've talked about this before- the struggle with feeling that I have to choose between making the memories or recording them. Our kids are so small, and so active, and seem to change by the minute. Sometimes that makes me feel manic, striving to document every second before it slips by. But sometimes I'm better at settling in, and soaking it up, taking opportunities to just be with my people, and rely on my memory to preserve the moment. 

Beyond just the documenting though, I miss creating...I'm sad about all the writing, photography, crafting and quilting I'm not doing. Creative expression brings me so much fulfillment, so it's hard to be content when that area is lacking. There's no shortage of busyness, it's a lot of busy-work, that doesn't come with the same sense of pride and satisfaction that makership does. (that's not technically a word. But I think it should be. So I made it. It's what we makers do.) I'm doing a lot these days, but still I look back and feel frustrated that I don't have more to show for it all. 

But I came across a quote recently that seemed to speak right to me, right where I am; So much so that I've been repeating it to myself ever since:  

Be patient with yourself. Nothing in nature blooms all year. 

OH, how I long to always be in bloom. Who doesn't?! I want to be full of color, a thing of beauty. I want to be open and lovely, basking in the sun, feeling proud to be on display.

But that's just not realistic. Nothing in nature blooms all year. Before the flowers, there must be buds. Stems. Leaves. Roots. And of course, even once the flowers come, they aren't forever.  Between blooms, there is withering, and dormancy, and rest.

And as a gardener (a topic I'm only qualified to speak about metaphorically), there are times to water, and times to prune. Times to fertilize, and wait.

So while I long to be always blooming- to feel the constant joy of creation, celebration, and big, showy radiance- I know that life isn't contained to that season alone. Even perennials- known for their brilliant blooming- go through cycles of change. There are seasons of budding and growth; and of wilting and hardening off.

I may be frustrated that I'm not blooming in exactly the way I'd like to be right now, but if I'm patient with myself I realize that I'm still in a rich- and necessary- season. We're becoming rooted: getting entrenched with family, establishing deep connections with friends and spreading wide, complex relationship pathways. We're growing: working on a solid marriage- the trunk to our family tree, adding branches of children and nurturing their growth. We're pruning: cutting out the things that are too much to sustain, and threaten to take away from what matters most. We're drinking in the nourishment that God is providing, we're preparing protection for storms, and we're fanning our leaves out to soak up as much sunlight as we possibly can.

So right now, I'm not in bloom every day. I'm not show-ready all the time. My energy isn't being funneled into beautiful petals made for admiration. But that doesn't mean this season isn't worthwhile, and good, and full. I need to be patient with myself, and settle into all that right now holds for me, knowing the blooming will come again, soon enough.

P.s. More about "seasons" of motherhood, and the doing/being balance.

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