Yesterday, Mark accused me of smoking weed — jokingly, but partly not. And just for clarity sake, I’m not. He’s simply grappling for some excuse as to why I’m so calm all the time in the midst of — well, our messy, noisy life. The last couple of days, the boys seemed to have joined their wills together to resist our authority. Yep, one of those phases again. Their weapons of choice this time? Whining, pouting, and crossing their arms with a simultaneous “huh.” Nice. Blythe, always wanting to be included with her brothers, has tried joining the conspiracy a couple of times. Only, instead of a grunty pout, she has the blood-curdling scream. Ususally, she loses interest.
Meanwhile, we have the mess. And I mean to say, “the mess,” as if it were a living organism. We have toys, laundry, markers, chalk, sand…etcetera that seems to pace this house as Andy’s toys in Toy Story, magically transplanting from one space to another and disappearing at will. Their migratory patterns suggest they loathe storage. Liam, however, is learning to enjoy clean spaces. He’s cleaned his room on his own volition a handful of times (every bit counts). By “clean” I mean clean floors and tables, with a soon-to-rupture closet and toy chest. Yes, I remember this. “See, Mom, it’s clean.”
As any of you who have children know, these phases (and fortunately, they are phases) wear you down quickly, hence the prompting question about the weed. So, Mark and I are beginning a time of training again: consistent (even petty) discipline, tons of reassurance, time, and love. I’ve realized in these short years that my kids usually begin reisisting us for one of two reasons: challenging us for our place of authority or not knowing/receiving our love for them (otherwise insecure in their position with us). Both need to be addressed spiritually and practically. Fortunately, I’m not too far removed from this process, as the Lord simulatneously deals with these “resistances” within me. So, I figure I have two choices during this time: relax and work with it, knowing it won’t last forever, or painstakingly try to control this process, usually leading me to a short-temper and often, anger. I wish I always chose the latter; although, it may cause others to believe you’re on drugs.