Friday, January 24, 2014

Writing my Story

I set my alarm for 6:00am this morning, assuming this would provide me a solid hour for writing and reading before the kids emerged from their respective bedrooms. I even, surprise of all surprises, got myself in bed by eleven. We had spent most of the day at the doctor and lounging in pajamas, telling the kiddos who knocked on the door that we were in quarantine, mostly to watch their eyebrows raise as they slowly backed away from the door. Jayci had a sky-high fever and a nasty cough, diagnosed as a nebulous virus, with the suggestion of honey to remedy the sore throat. We sip tea sweetened with extra doses of honey, and Jayci and Caden toast each other occasionally, with Caden triumphantly declaring he will "dwink my healfy healfy tea!"

So I suppose I should not have been surprised to hear coughing and yelling for mommy that started at around midnight and continued fairly unabated until nearly 5am. Somewhere around 3:00am, I listened to Adam's even breathing against the back-drops of Jayci's pathetic coughs. With a sigh, I turned over and switched off my alarm, putting my feet back on the ground to respond to Jayci's cries before I even had a chance to swing them up into bed.

I decided, laying in the dim light, to write my story differently. To write it with fingers run through blonde locks framing flushed pink cheeks. With cool fingers tracing circles on her back at 2:39, and again at 4:15. To write it snuggled under her blankets, the ones she has cast aside feverishly.

With tiptoed footsteps and bathroom-breaks without flushing, before slipping back between sheets gone back cold. Pressing icy toes into Adam's muscled calves for heat, turning the clock backwards so the numbers dont taunt with orange glow cast on heavy eyes.

To tell my story with coffee brewing while water boils for tea and the kids watch The Incredibles for the fifth time this week. With answering the door to icy blasts and please and thank-you from under-dressed-for-the-cold-teenagers.  Pulling on worn boots with my pajama pants and a hoodie. Granola bars and bagels and driving three boys to school, a ride just long enough for the car to warm up as I pull back in through our gate.

Writing my story with knees on the floor scrubbing baseboards and sinks, shiny white and lemon mingling til the chrome finally gleams like new. Folding Anteaters uniforms, only after twice-through-the-washer, because it takes as much to extinguish their distinct odor of teenage-boy-sweat.  Letting the kids wash the dishes, not bothering to re-do them myself before piling cups into cupboards and clattering forks in the drawer.

Writing in fits and starts between trips to shush Caden's boisterous songs from his crib. And padded footsteps to Jayci's room, pressing a cool washcloth to her hot forehead, the room emanating body heat, while she shivers and pulls blankets up under her chin.

And so today I write my story in cuddles and stories, and a piece-meal lunch of noodles and sweet potatoes and left-over fruit salad from Chick-fil-a. The story might not be deep, or feel important, or life-shattering. But it is real. And true. And hard and beautiful, somehow entangled together more firmly than the necklaces we strung back onto hooks earlier this morning. My day dissolves into entropy, all the best-laid-plans for naught, until I settle into the story I find myself writing with my very life. The story that God speaks more loudly sometimes in the little choices than the big ones. In scrubbing toilets and breathing grace. In time-outs and shared tasks, in paying bills and taking out the trash. Because sometimes loving the least and encountering Jesus there may not be what I expect, but it's exactly what I need.


  1. This is lovely, Becca! I love when you write from your heart. I am so turned off by all the contrived writers with their stories of 'little old me in the big bad city.' Give me a break.

  2. This is so incredibly beautiful. What a beautiful way to choose joy--giving up your alone time, your right to sleep, to staying cozy in your warm home and seeing it all as a way of writing your story. I am truly inspired.

    1. You are too kind :-) and seriously, I rarely choose to look at things this way :-) Sometimes I listen to Jesus though haha

  3. Thank you. My little girl, who is Jayci's age, also had a fever earlier this week and I was answering all night calls as well. My little boy is not too much younger than Caden. I appreciate your honesty and your writing is truly breath-taking. Thank you for your was exactly what I needed after a long week.

  4. it's so incredibly hard when the little ones are sick. hard on them, and hard on the mama. you wish you could take all the pain away and put it upon yourself so they don't feel nothing but happiness. but this too shall pass... you have a beautiful heart and i love reading your posts!

    jenna justine

    1. Thanks so much Jenna! And that is exactly how I feel - totally want to take it all away from her! Thankfully I think she is FINALLY on the mend :-)

  5. Thank you for this post. Such a beautiful reminder that even in the midst of sickness and mundane... I have the option to choose joy. Hope your girl feels better soon!

  6. Oh, you are so good. SO good. Thank you for helping me to see Jesus in these moments.
    Wishing health for your household!


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