Last week at Emmanuelle's impromptu sleepover, I was kept on my toes making sure it was one to remember. On top of special snacks, a run to the drug store for a guest toothbrush, a late night movie, and full day of fun, this momentous occasion called for a token craft that would serve to remind of the memories made long after the fun was over.
With some pre-painted pots already on hand and some newly bought crepe paper, we created little faux pinatas holding secret treasure. After filling with sun warmed earth, we planted paper embedded with seeds and sprinkled with water.
I've been thinking a lot these days about this great and sometimes heavy responsibility we carry as mothers. How it isn't enough to dress our kids up pretty or polish up their external manners if we aren't just as busy working on growing beauty and strength on the inside.
The last few weeks, while filled with memorable moments of joy and glimmers of victory, have been tough. I've been at times discouraged at the fruit I see in my children, wondering if I'm planting well. I've been challenged to evaluate my approach to many aspects of my mothering and teaching (because they go so daily hand in hand), studying to improve the things that don't come easy for me, wanting to model better the things that are hard for them.
These days slip into years and I realize that the discipline of each day grants a harvest that will exposed through the years. What I do and teach in these moments becomes who they are in that moment when they are released for life on their own.
While I cannot do the becoming and I cannot do the choosing, I can prepare the soil and I can plant the seeds. Seeds of kindness, seeds of justice, seeds of truth, seeds of creativity. I can give them the opportunity now to grow the rewards of self-discipline, of hard work, of an earnest education.
Because I want to present them to the world as more than a pretty face with a keen sense of fashion (not that this wouldn't be the cherry on top! ;). I want them to go forward towards their life purposes with a wealth of knowledge and the confidence that it will take to go against the prevalent tides of apathy and passivity.
And that? That right there is going to require work, mama. Hard work and discipline, but most of all a deep and abiding love that drives you to your knees and drives your children to your arms. This life isn't all about me. So much of it is about them and how we invest our love and life for theirs.
I don't want to arrive at the fast approaching end of eighteen years thinking, where did the time go? I want to redeem it now, in moments of flower pot crafts and heart to heart conversations in the kitchen, in discipline for their studies and personal passions, in whispers of correction and embraces of forgiveness.
Because I only have them for such a short time and one soon day will only observe from the distance, watching to see...how will they bloom?