Christmas · motherhood · reflections

A Long-ish Post about Just Joy and Grace

I let myself go blogging dark for a bit because I didn’t have words for a week that ended like that.  I wrapped my arms around my kids when they got home that afternoon and then I made pizza and later I prayed and wept and apologized over and over for thinking my own trials were anything in the face of insurmountable grief.

Since Columbine and Pennsylvania and Virginia Tech, I’ve birthed a first grader and a second grader.  I’ve earned a degree and five teaching certifications.  I have sat in a faculty meeting and been assigned to a team for the worst case scenario and heard my principal explain why our Connections teachers would have to be the ones to identify because they often know every student in the school.  I’ve hidden students in the corner for the drill and wondered if it would really do any good if they madman came.  So Friday afternoon when facebook and CNN and text messages kept coming, all I could whisper was a feeble thanks that my children and my school and my family have thus far been spared, and all I could realize was the humbling acknowledgement that I can’t keep them safe.  I can’t live in a bubble that doesn’t have schools or malls or theaters or cars or cancer.  All I can do is thank God for another day.  So I got up Saturday morning and made muffins.

We went to Christmas on the Square and children sang “Away in a Manger” and goats stole the scene at the live Nativity.  We saw Santa and the Chipmunks sang in the furniture store picture windows and the girls were carefree and happy and silly.




We were just normal, and I was grateful.  It’s all we can really do isn’t it?  When we hear of tragedy?  Be thankful and find joy because it forces the evil back a little bit more.
Gypsy Mama and Holy Experience gave some words to comfort any mama’s heart.
Now we’re into another week and some believe the world is ending and for others it already did, but I’ve got Christmas baking to start and presents to wrap and an 8 year old home with the stomach bug that has wiped out two-thirds of the second grade.
It’s by grace that this is my life.

We’ve been spreading a little joy all around this week in an effort to give thanks for Christmas but also for those who cherish our children for so much of everyday.  Wish I had pictures of the hugs bestowed when we brought Starbucks for the car greeters at school yesterday.  Wish I’d taken pictures of the gorgeous baby biscuits and golden jars of homemade apple butter we handed out to teachers.

Something small can say a lot.

Small can be big.  Our account is low and our cash is now change.  But there will be gifts under our tree and goodies in the cookie jars and a feast on our table.
My sister is home from Maine and she’s carrying another blessing and chasing her first up and down the stairs at my mama’s house and around the giant Fraser Fir that has sat in that same corner for so many more years than I can remember.

May your Christmas be blessed.  Ours already is.

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