It's been over a month since I last posted anything, and to be quite honest, it feels weird to be writing now, but a month of silence of silence is long enough.
I'm not sure what to say about this past month. So much has happened, and yet so much is the same as it always is. Timmy started crawling and walking around furniture. He also has a mouth full of big, goofy teeth that grins at me all day long. Daily I mourn the loss of his babyhood but am trying to be ever present as he sheds his baby skin and molds into a young boy. Birdie has finally started talking more, which has been so helpful. You know how much I love words--they basically bounce around in my brain all day long--so having a nonverbal child has been a real challenge for me. Elle is starting to read and memorize sight words, and sitting with her each day makes me so grateful for my college education because although BYU didn't really warn me about all the diapers I'd have to change and tantrums I'd have to coax kids out of, BYU did educate me on the art of teaching, and I have successfully taught my older kids to read and write before they started elementary school. So thanks BYU--thanks for that. Genevieve turned 6, and I didn't even write on her birthday because well, I'm sure I was painting that night and never found time to write anything on this space about her, but let me tell you--she is one special girl. I believe she is the best big sister in the world, and I also believe I couldn't do half of what I do as a mom without her. I know she isn't the easiest kid in the world for everyone, but somehow, I won her love and affection, and she showers me with service every single day. Mya struggled to find her footing at her new school but has since been moved up to an advanced class and finally started making friends. Just today she brought home 2 phone numbers with the hope that I will be brave enough to call her friends' moms and schedule a play date. Moving has made me braver in some ways and weaker in others, but I am currently trying to find the courage to call 2 strangers and invite their kids to our house. Wish me luck.
I think that pretty much catches you up on our life. Tim and I have been painting the trim of our house white every night for over a month so that our painter can paint the walls (we couldn't afford for her to do both). I think both of us will be so happy when we never have to touch another paint brush again. Last night as we painted the baseboards and windows in the master bath, Tim's hand started to cramp, and he laughed, "I think I'm starting to get carpal tunnel syndrome from all this painting." He might be right. Our hands, backs, bums and heads are so tired of staying up late, stretching our bodies in weird ways to reach tricky corners or high ceilings, and we are ever so grateful for the men and women who actually enjoy painting as a trade. Thank goodness for them because we could never do this for a living. We are nearly done with the main and upper levels of the house, and the house is really starting to feel like ours. I am so grateful I hired the painter I did because she's been so meticulous to detail and has helped my dream home ideas come to fruition.
As much as I'm tired of painting and organizing the house (even though we are far from being finished with organizing everything), I am grateful for the task because it has distracted me from feeling lonely. Loneliness has a way of eating away at me, or at least it has in the past, and so I am grateful to for distractions--my kids being the biggest distraction.
I have focused on being present and still with my kids, listening to them as they speak, sing, cry, yell--you name it...I hear it. There is something so profound about being still. I know I've written about it before, but I believe that if we would all just take a few minutes and separate ourselves from the world and just be whoever it is we are in our own space, we can feel truly happy. We can begin to understand who we are. Who God is. Who the people are around us. And we can let go of the things we're not or the things God isn't or the things that drive us crazy about the people who surround us.
The constant stillness I have felt since we moved into our house has really given me the opportunity to focus on my faith--not the faith that I have in my religion (although I feel that is obviously inherent in certain ways), but the faith that I am trying to cultivate daily in myself, in God and in others. I have felt God's presence so closely since we moved. I know I am not alone, even though I am very much alone. I know someone hears the words inside my head, even if I don't have time to write them out in a blog post. I know that someone forgives my humble attempt at being a parent at which I fail at all too frequently. He reminds me he too is a parent. He too listens to tantrums (but from 30, 40, 50 year olds). He too reaches his arms downward to his children who reach upward. He is there. I know it.
And so, I am sorry I have been absent. I will try to be more present here, but only if it doesn't get in the way of me being present in the lives of the people that need me most. I am so lucky to be needed as much as I am needed. I am also the richest girl in the world because I am loved beyond measure, and that is something to be treasured.