“Is this all I’m meant for?” I thought as I stood over the kitchen sink scrubbing yet another stack of dirty dishes.
My ears were ringing, not just from the clatter of pots and pans, but from the shrieks of my children who were running circles around me.
I scanned the rest of the kitchen and sighed in defeat as I took in the mess surrounding me. In the midst of completing one simple task, my children had created a hundred more for me to do.
The countertops that I had just cleared were already covered again with crayons and stickers and scraps of paper.
Milk was pooling on the floor next to the refrigerator as it dripped from the defective lid of a sippy cup.
And just then the toddler dumped out a wallet full of change, each coin rolling in a different direction, one slipping between the slats of a vent.
“Is this all there is for me?” I silently screamed. “Cooking and cleaning and picking up junk, the samejunk, over and over?”
And then I heard it, a whisper as quiet as the breath of a sleeping newborn baby.
“This is everything you asked for.”
I set the dishrag aside and surveyed the scene with a new perspective. I took off the glasses of a weary mother and put on the glasses of a grateful one.
This place called home? I asked for it.
This place to raise a family? I asked for it.
This family I’ve been given to raise? I asked for it.
This kitchen to cook in? And craft in? And gather in? I asked for it.
And suddenly I heard laughter within the noise. I saw children instead of interruptions. I spotted art amongst the trash. I observed beauty within the mess.
This life isn’t easy, or pretty, or put together. But it’s just what I asked for.
May I remember to see it through the lens of gratitude each day.
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