It’s late, and I’ve just crawled into bed, thrilled to be between the soft flannel sheets. The cool of the night surrounds me, but I can feel the warmth coming. It builds like mid-day in the summer, when the backyard is quiet and the heat of the sun rests like a lightweight blanket.
Calm, warm, relaxing.
Summer feels like a long time ago, not simply just last season. Because now, when I wake, frost on the rooftops greets my eyes, and red and yellow leaves litter the still-green grass.
The furnace is now running. I hear it click on, and its warmth enters our bedroom. I’m wearing my favorite pajamas: leggings and a sweatshirt. Yes, I’m barefoot. Yes, our dog is sleeping. I know he is asleep by the whistling noises his nose makes. Is this his sixth or seventh nap, I wonder. The blankets make their own white noise as I adjust them to find a comfortable position. I’m thrilled to be in bed. (Have I mentioned that yet?)
* * *
For over 13 years now I’ve written in this space. It welcomes me like a familiar friend or a memory book, and I exhale with relief for her gentle dedication. There are many events, many details over the years that have blurred a little, similar to when I see my child run by (and I’m not sure which child is running).
I’m glad to have this memory bank to draw from.
When I began writing in this space I was newly married with no insight into blogging. A handmade business began in Michigan; there was a lot learned that year. Then we moved to Minnesota, and the business grew five-fold. We lived there for a few years, then one evening, late at night, Zack and I began the drive to California. We moved, brought along our dog Bauer, and learned rather quickly what was necessary to survive in Los Angeles. Our first baby was born, a son! So darling, so blonde, so much joy.
Three babies later and we are back in Michigan. We paid off our debt, a huge joyful accomplishment! This handmade business is “on hold,” and instead of designing products and ordering fabric and zippers, I’m homeschooling my children and ordering groceries. So many groceries! Didn’t we just restock the fridge and pantry?
My children aren’t the only ones learning: I’m a graduate student at Moody. This has been such a fun “new beginning.” My husband started his own creative agency and works from home. I’m sure some (most?) days he wishes it wasn’t so loud at home ;) But we are really thriving on the abundance of family time. We still have Bauer. My love for him is grand but also temperamental at times. Ha!
As a family, we have learned and grown so much. In fact, we are always learning and growing. It feels very natural, and I love all the phases of parenthood. I’m so glad we get to experience so much together.
* * *
I know when the morning comes to greet me it will still be cool in our house. After all, winter is nearing. But within just a few minutes of me up for the day, mothering the child (all the children?) who has left the warmth of their sheets, I’ll be preparing something for us to drink and eat, and our warmth will mask the cool of the room. I’ll click on a light for this little person, and instantly we’ll be illuminated. We’ll read a book on the couch and wait for the rest of our family to rise.
Questions will begin – little ones are so good at asking questions, and gently, with a rasp in my voice, I’ll squeak, “May I have just a few more minutes to wake up?”
My feet move across the hardwood floors to start this, get that, calm her, answer that – with such rhythmic motion, I wonder if I could do this while I sleep? Actually, scratch that, I know I could do it in my sleep. (Been there; done that.)
And while some days I do feel as though I’m mothering while asleep, pouring drinks and making breakfast and clicking on lamps and making room for one more child, I know the Spirit is with those who call Him, “Lord.“ Asleep or awake, I’m never alone.
I’m with Him, and He is with me.
In the evening, or when I rise.
The cool surrounds me, but it’s warm inside.