I had a particularly rough day recently. I've been on a mission to declutter my home, one small area at a time. One morning, I was working on cleaning my room and my goal, my only real goal was to sweep my hardwood floors and vacuum my rug in our master bedroom. That's it. Not too hard, right?
The cleaner my bedroom got, the messier the rest of the house became. My 4 year old and toddler were tornadoes that day. The baby was happy, but he was one more interruption to my cleaning plans.
It seemed I would never finish the cleaning and vacuuming. Finally, it was done, and I turned off the vacuum and walked into the kitchen to check on the kids.
I walked in and saw Tostitos corn chips all over the place. They covered the cafe table in the kitchen and spilled off onto the tile floor.
Seeing my 4 year old at the table, I asked "Isabelle, what did you do???"
"I'm just feeding my giraffe, Mommy," was her reply.
My first thought was an "If only..."
"If only she were in pre-school somewhere, my kitchen would still be clean." Everyone else's kids, ages 2 and up, are either at Mother's Day Out or pre-school somewhere. That's the norm among my friends. I keep all of my kids home because we homeschool, or we will when she's of school age.
"If only she were in pre-school somewhere, my kitchen would still be clean."
And also in my head, I could hear her tiny little voice stating very logically "I'm just feeding my giraffe, Mommy." In her hand was a 4 inch tall giraffe and she was very carefully, very tenderly feeding it tortilla chips.
"If only she were in pre-school somewhere...
...I would miss this moment."
No giraffe feeding. No chance for me to see this morning's creative & messy play. No chance for me to smile and give her the dust pan so that she can learn about cleaning too.
This is exactly why she's home with me.