Today my kids are 15, almost 14, and soonly 12.  Who are those little creatures that used to dwell here?  They are not the children sleeping near me right now.  Looking back I realize why I probably stopped writing for a while.  Puberty hit and things got ugly.  The “crazy fun” I used to write about in all our “togetherness” when they were small – the frustrating, mind-boggling, exhausting, bliss of motherhood I once reveled in has turned a corner and what was around the bend has brought me into the light.  *I did not say it led me to the light, this light I speak of is more like a blinding flashlight shining into my eyeballs at 4 a.m…  Yet here I am, still alive to write about it.  I love them, those three.  They are still my precious loves, somewhere inside their hormonal bodies.  Past the bitter words they spit out before they’ve even tasted them, outside their phones where they transport themselves for easier access to friends away from that annoying reality where time cannot stop and start at the push of a button.  I’m too tired to get into detail about the ways in which they’ve “grown”, I can only say for now that I understand something profoundly important about Wordsworth and his appeal for childhood innocence.  I’m making an appeal for it too, here in this house with these loves of mine.  As my littlest chicka sleeps next to me while her daddy’s out of town, I felt compelled to come here for my nighttime prayer.  Thank you God, for getting us this far.  So far so safe.  Please protect us and guide us as we navigate these tumultuous years ahead.  So far so safe and if all I ever have to endure is constant worry and occasional verbal abuse, I’ll be blessed.  I’ll age in dog years, but we will survive.  They are good souls and I realize now that that has always been my greatest hope.

Had I foreseen a D in math 4 years ago I’d have hung up my apron right then, grabbed a case of Slim Fast, and bought a one-way ticket to Morocco for my failing.  Had I foreseen the maturing of integrity, honesty, compassion, self-pride, and love which I could not possibly introduce anew today should these have been deficiently sown, I’d have realized a D in math is completely surmountable compared to higher mountains.  Thank you, God, for these three blessings.  For helping me make them a gift to this world, and for the many gifts they have given me.  As I watch over their expanding souls, I can think of nothing that truly grows a soul like motherhood.

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