There are certain times during the year where I feel like all of life is in fast-forward. This time of year is one of them.
Every fall it feels like the kids will have just headed back to school and before I can even register the transition between summer and winter, suddenly November is on our doorstep, begging to begin a frenzied blur of festivities.
It all starts with a season of gratefulness and counting of blessings. Then it’s a quick goodbye to pumpkin pies and turkeys, and a frantic changing of seasonal gears to recount Christ’s birth – rejoicing in the fullness of life He brings. And before anyone can blink or take a long winter’s nap, in a burst of confetti and sparkle, the end of the year is gone and we’re suddenly celebrating what has been and what will be. Three jam-packed glorious holidays within six weeks’ time. It’s a lot to handle. For even the most prepared of mamas.
Sometimes it feels like I can barely catch my breath between these momentous celebrations. You too?
But I’m discovering that these seasons of change affect more than just the calendar year. They also influence how I view my children and their present stages of development.
There are particular seasons of their growing up that I have loved. Like really loved. The baby stage where everything they did was amazing. Coo, smile, burp, or crinkle up their little noses. Put down the laundry and grab the camera! … The toddler years where every day was exciting and new, and Legos and board books were our go to. … Then the preschool/kindergarten years where learning was thrilling and fieldtrips and snack times were the best things ever.
But here we are in a new season in more ways than one. And it’s really easy for me to wish for those long ago days when things in the now stress me out.
I must admit that it’s harder for me to embrace some of these more muddled moments. Where the questions are quite a bit harder and the emotions are quite a bit bigger. There are tough conversations and difficult attitudes and discussions of what it means to live out your faith. There’s friendship quandaries and poor choices and drama. Lots of drama.
And yet, I don’t want to wish these years away. Because they’re important chapters, significant parts belonging to one big grand story in the lives of my children. And in the making and pruning and shaping of me as their mom.
They are beautiful souvenirs, breathtaking mementos, to help us remember. The greatness of our God and the good plans He has for our children.
So here’s to long conversations at bedtime. Tearful talks. Messy prayers. Moments of questioning. Wild and crazy family game nights. Impromptu snowball fights. And laughter over who can sing the longest and loudest.
Here’s to living in the now. And praising God for the season we’re in. In the good seasons. And the hard ones too.
Let’s not wish them away, sweet mamas. Not ever.
Because no season is a mistake. And the seasons change all too quickly.