These Aren’t Interruptions

I’m in the university library to find the article I want on neuroscience and writing.  I’m suddenly interrupted by the pull of the juvenile fiction section on the 5th floor where I remember they have all the P. D. Eastman books that my youngest daughter still loves (Go, Dog. Go!,  Sam and the Firefly, The Best Nest).

I spend all my time there, and for once, it doesn’t feel like I’m just getting through some kid’s library event on my way to what I really want to be doing. 

Many times over the years of being a mother, I’ve felt like I’m just trying to get through something.  I’d think to myself:  I just have to get through this night waking, this potty training, this noise at the dinner table, this driving everywhere, this laundry, this cleaning, this bedtime routine.  I need to get through these interruptions in order to arrive at what I really want to be doing. 

I believed some clever lie that kept me from embracing motherhood fully.  Motherhood was something to endure, and this made me so deeply troubled and ashamed that the dark days of depression stole half a decade of my life.  

My doctor told me one afternoon that “my children are not interruptions” to the life I want to have.  They are my life.  Exactly how God designed it. 

That’s what I remembered last night:  It’s 3:15 AM, and my youngest wakes me up needing a drink and a snuggle.  We’ve been training her for months to stay in her bed, but still she comes, a wandering little soul wanting me in the night.  I gather her to me, and when I tiptoe into the cold kitchen to get her a cup of water, I notice the fresh snow in the moonlight.

This isn’t an interruption.  This is worship and wonder at 3:15 AM.   I don’t sleep after that; I listen to my daughter breathing and can hear the icy whisper of snow falling outside.  I don’t have to get through this. This isn’t pain to endure on the way to what I’d rather be doing.

There’s wonder and worship here–every day–no matter how sticky, loud, or sleep deprived this day seems.  Our days are not something to get through as we endure interruptions to our real life.  This is our life: wonderful, beautiful, and just right for us.   And as I hear snow falling, I remember that sometimes we have to listen harder to comprehend that truth.