So my toddlers and I went grocery shopping this morning. At our local store, they have kid sized baskets for the children to push. So each of my kids had a basket full of food and were running and banging into each other and generally wreaking havoc on our poor store.
It takes a lot to ruffle my feathers most days so I was handling it ok, with constant reminders to “use walking feet” and “don’t bash into each other.” They really weren’t acting that crazy, but by the time we got to the frozen veggies I was pretty much ready to get out of there as quickly as possible.
So I’m standing there trying to keep them from destroying things or each other and trying to pick out some lima beans.
Then this sweet lady walks up and makes a comment about how sweet my kids are. We get to talking and she tells me that all of her children and grandchildren and great grandchildren live far away and she doesn’t get to see them often. She tells me that her husband has been gone for 10 years. She says it is hard to cook for just one person. And that sometimes when she is with her church family she likes to remind them how lucky they are to have family to eat dinner with.
What a blessing it is to have a husband to eat dinner with. What a blessing it is to have children to eat dinner with.
I’m guilty of dreaming of the day when the kids are grown and they have kids of their own and my husband and I can do what we want. I’m guilty of dreaming of retirement and forgetting that now is a gift and this moment is a treasure.
Someday my house will be clean. I won’t have a Thomas plate in my sink or baby dolls on the couch. I won’t have algebra books on the kitchen table or toilet paper all over the bathroom.
But our house will be empty and quiet and these are the moments I will miss.
I’m so glad for that sweet great grandmother who shared her wisdom with me this morning and who reminded me that this house-bursting-at-the-seams stage of my life is precious and wonderful and that it won’t last long.