wake up and remember: a repost

{Repost: Originally published July 2017}

I've been spending a little bit of this week recounting my failures as a mother.

Well, "failures" is a big word. Missteps, perhaps, as a mother. The times I know I did the reverse of the best. The troublesome times I went left instead of right. The times I wasn't patient, wasn't kind.

I can remember frequently praying, "God, if my children have to bear the consequences of their own actions, then let it be done. But please don't let them ever be burdened by consequences of MY actions." For whatever good that prayer did...I don't know.

But I get tired sometimes. Being a single mom for 24 years--it's hard. It's the greatest work there is, but it's an endurance test, to be sure. And sometimes, I don't really have what it takes.

I fell asleep last night weary to the bone. Not for any particular reason. Just...ugh
Such a tired feeling came over me.

Will is cleaning out his room this morning. Odd to find him awake before me, pouring coffee. This child who has been sleeping until 2 in the afternoon, or longer, as of late. I felt a bit like Marty McFly this morning, when he awakes at the end of the movie to find his world changed.

Among the boxes of his things in the basement, Will had found a book I made for the occasion of his high school graduation. He came up to show me something in it--a picture we had been remembering a few days back but he didn't know where it went.

"Here is that picture," he said, "you were right. It was on the last page." Then he left the book for me to look at while I drank my coffee.

In it, a reminder of so, so many things. Pictures of memories I had forgotten. A collection of family life I had packed away. The front door of the house on St. Margaret. The kitchen! And oh-remember-that-little-breakfast-bar! The park we went to with my dad in Pennsylvania. Chloe when she was a kitten, and Oreo--sweet Oreo the bunny. We would take her with us to camp every summer. What a rag-tag team of Mudds we were--imagine arriving at summer camp with a bunny in tow!😂 What a riot!

But the pictures are not the best part. You see, over the years, I had steadily collected conversations as well. I have always been aware of the power of words to paint a picture. Little bits of this and that. A collection of moments that absolutely would have gone forgotten--and to read these? The best.

The best, most reassuring, answer to a prayer I didn't know I had. That, oh yes I remember feeling. That, oh that's right we were okay. We did laugh. Many, many moments outshined the blurrier, darker misfires.  This, an answered prayer. Immediately.

As if God two things to say about my weary plea last night:
1: Go to sleep, and then

2: Wake up and remember.

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