Friday, May 28, 2010

a day in the life now

I wake up to little boy legs climbing up the side of the bed, and a little voice quoting a favorite book, "Good morning!...said the bug." I yawn reluctant and stare at smiling eyes and dark curls and listen to happy jabberish. I must leave him again today. He doesn't seem to know, but he will. Once I put on the work outfit and brush my hair and bring out his bag, he will. And the serious son will show himself. He will not cry; he rarely does anymore. That almost makes me more sad, at times.

I drop him off with a lovely woman and her daughter from my church, who have 4'x3' salt-water aquariums in their house for my boy to stare at and love. I leave the stroller, the car seat, the diapers, the snacks, my thoughts. I drive away as he stares at me through the screen door. I miss him already, and pray I don't miss something new that he says, does, or is.

I am now at school, preparing for three classes of anxious, June-filled 4th graders. We compose, sing Memorial Day songs, prepare for leading an assembly with joyful celebration, and let off some energy with singing games. It is a happy place, this music room. It is safe. The shy are comfortable here, the rambunctious are watchful...they know the boundaries. It works here. Forty minutes each. And they are gone, I send them on their way to learn the wonders of the rest of life. I hope they love music, and not just the activity of the classes, or the personality of the teacher. I talk some with wonderful teachers, some with grouchy teachers just waiting on summer, wait for the word to order more supplies, hope that parents will understand grades come end of term.

I drive back to him, and he runs across the lawn to hug into me and holds tight and never stops smiling. He is hot and sweaty on my silk blouse and loud in my noised-out ear and I love it all. They tell me of his not eating much at all, but drinking lots of juice, his small nap because they had to go pick up the dad, his playing in the boat, and meeting the neighbor-kids. I nod appreciatively, knowing I can never repay them for the love they show us. They know this, and never make it awkward, always giving me more information than I ask, always reminding me that they love him and want to help. I drive home with my baby again, and he is quiet, listening to the wind. I take the time to warm up my voice a bit before tonight. He laughs and gets loud as I do. I try to see if he will imitate pitch...he does not. Someday, we will sing together.

I am home, and have an hour until Jon is home and I must leave. I make a quick pasta dinner with salad, in-between reading with Jeremiah his new favorite book, and quoting it while stirring sauce as I'm not actively reading. I love that he gets his memory of songs and books from me. He quotes all day long, reciting whole songs and books from his little brain. Jon is home, I quickly change into non-mom attire and put lotion on my legs, and bring a makeup bag for the car, and kiss him goodbye.

The audition is 45 minutes away (with no traffic) with a small opera company and I sing confident. It feels good to emote and not worry about what they think I'm saying, because I know what I'm saying. Technique is solid, breath is full, and emotions are, for now, steady and sailing forth in all artistry. They ask me to sing in their summer concert series, and we are all pleased. Success over nerves, and success in showing myself well. I will sing this summer. It goes on.

At home, the son is still not asleep, though it is close to 8:30. He has been doing this lately, and though Jon is tired of trying, I am glad to see him one more time before nightfall. I go into the dark to cuddle him and sing a song, and tell him what mommy just did. He claps and says his prayer, and we hug and he lays heavy on his Thomas pillow with a "nigh-night, mommy." I smile and goodnight as well.

Jon and I watch a playoff game, or a movie, or nothing as we catch up on life. It is not the same as when we met in college...then was all time and energy and chances to see each other in the best light. Now, we have this time only. Later at night is not what it used to be - fun and frivolous and mystery and good talks. Now, it is so tired and peaceful rest, and not so intentional. It is not bad, but it is hard to get quality time together to really see each other. We are still in love, and he is wonderful, and I try to be wonderful, but it's hard when we don't have time to just be until 9pm each night. We remember - I remember - the good, and prepare for another day. Before bed, I read His Word, "For I know the plans I have for you..." from the book that is my son's namesake, and I breathe relief and remember trust. Finally, I am back where I started...on my pillow, ready for rest. It is later than I wished, but tomorrow is another day, full of promise and gusto and desire and life. Jon says, "goodnight, honey," and kisses me. I smile, and it is still and we sleep.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

after God's heart.

I want so much to be a complete mother. I want so much to do the things I read about others' doing - the green cleaning, the inspirational and challenging homeschooling, the guiding of children to a greater understanding of our Lord, the eating-more-with-less-meal plans, the growing and encouraging of well-rounded young lives.

It is all so overwhelming. Sometimes I want to cry with the pressure of it all to be everything I want to be to this little one and the ones to come. I am not enough.

Yes, I know I am not enough. There is a part of me that understands and accepts that and lives in God's grace that He will give me strength and motivation and clarity while being a mother. It's the times that I leave His grace and forget that perfection is unattainable this side of heaven and let fear rule my thoughts and actions and control my mouth. Those are the difficult times.

Yes, I know I will grow and learn. I know that I will need to take risks and escape my comfort zone to try some of these things that God has for me and my family. I know that I will need to lead the charge at times. And I will need to be constantly checking back in with God, growing in knowledge of Him. Most of all, I want my son to see me as a woman after God's heart. If nothing else, may He know that.

Sunday, May 09, 2010

peaceable singing

I am going to the C______ meeting in a couple on nights to find out if I have the Copland solo or not. I have an audition in a week with L_____ Opera for their summer concert season and fall production Hansel and Gretel. I love Hansel and Gretel...and I think I have a good chance to be in it. I hope I hope I hope. The production is paid as well. PAID! What would it be like to be paid to sing in a show...

I am not really nervous about this audition. There have been bigger things afoot here in our household. My son is starting a program to help him with his speech and social delays, and I am fearful. And I am praying. Very hard. If you know me, or even if you don't, I would covet your prayers for our little one. He is still the happy, beautiful child we've always known, but not progressing at the rate he should. We have appointments scheduled to make sure he's ok in other areas. I know God is in control, but please pray that the truth of that statement will give real peace to my heart, no matter what the tests show. The week has been moments filled with teary conversations whenever anyone wants to know what's going on. The good news is, he's getting help once, maybe twice a week and it will be great for him. I really feel that he is going to make big strides with these wonderful people who are trained to notice the little things. I just hope I can keep up.

So, all in all, hard times, but also good times. God is good and I am choosing to trust Him, even when I feel like breaking. So, what's an audition in light of that? It's just supposed to be music...beautiful music. And I will sing it that way, from inside of me to them.

Monday, May 03, 2010

giving thanks anyway.

Today is a hard day, with too much to process and demons who bring unforgiving thoughts and tears that come unbidden. But, as I am reminded today, we are to give thanks in all things. So, here goes:

21. snappy school-children who think grownup but are young

22. challenging music that creates dyslexic chords

23. honest analysis of my baby

24. help around the corner

25. the dirt and dust and grime in every spot of this apartment, for all who care to find it

26. my emotional mess of a self

27. clouds

28. humidity and rain

29. a child who sleeps unawares of change

30. lessons learned in how to trust in You.

Lord, may I trust and cling ever harder to You as more of my worldly security is stripped away, leaving the soul exposed and walls torn down. That's what I want, but I forget how cold it can be to be so naked in front of so many. You know all, see all, and ARE all. Hold our family during this time of trusting. Give us clarity and true thoughts and wise decisions. Keep us together and help me love, when all I want to do is run. Thank you for this day. Amen.

holy experience