We’ve made it to half term. To the land of co parenting for a week. To a change in routine and pace. To a world of sharing the crazy, rather than ploughing on through alone. I’m very very grateful for these times. I’m glad there is a change of pace for husbandface who has done amazingly this half term but who is also exhausted by giving out so much at work when on meds and in the changing of our church community.
We had a good week last week. Calmer parenting took place. I remembered the reality that God is my helper with the small people, I processed some important stuff about life right now which made me feel less angsty and more aware of the value of small, the value of sacrifice and the value of pouring life out for the people immediately in front of me each day.
The boys were exhausted and so we did slow. We did parks on cold afternoons to stop them going crazy. We watched Tractor Ted and we did lots of baking. We held on to the end. We did a day of hanging out with my lovely sister in law and her three wonderful children at the end of the week. We chatted and had cups of tea whilst the kids played outside, made mud pies, constructed Lego models and generally enjoyed each other. It was a beautiful way to end this half of term.
The other theme of the week was preparation for the party of the year. Son1’s excitement knew no bounds. I spent the week having many chats about expectations, when presents would be opened, what would happen when and generally felt like I was giving myself advice. It is amusing and scary how similar our brains are at times.
I had some crazy dreams about the party and clearly had to work through my own feelings about it as well. Thankfully on Saturday morning I was reminded that Jesus loved a good party, that celebration and hospitality are our lifeblood and that it was a Good Thing to celebrate our insane eldest’s Birthday.
We had a lovely day with family and friends, we were delighted that Binface and Ali joined Mum and Dad and my brother and his wife for lunch and dinner and glad of their excellent help during the party.
We had a quiet corner (because family of introverts), tea and coffee on tap and husbandface did an amazing job of entertaining small children for a few games and cake. Son1 did very well at surviving the day, my favourite moment being finding him outside on a step, after the games had stopped, just taking stock of the day. He told me he was overwhelmed and tired out. We cuddled and I drank in his gorgeousness. I can’t believe we’ve lived four years with him, loving seeing him grow and change and develop.
The start of half term is always hard. My body wants to give up and handover all parenting to husbandface. He in turn just wants to hide in a cave after the stresses of the term. This morning we managed to remember that rest isn’t found in the tv screen, that two children under 5 are not restful but that God is giving us strength to keep on loving them and each other.
We can give each other space this week, we can be patient with each other and help each other find time alone and extra sleep. We can also remember that rest isn’t made up of retreat from everything but is found in drinking up the love of the one who loves us most. In breathing lions strength from his warm mane.
We have some fun stuff in store. We have some slow days planned, some seeing friends and some time for each other away in our caves. I’m hopeful about the week ahead. I’m glad of a change in rhythm and a chance to enjoy my very small world right now.