Wonderful Expectation

I’m sitting in front of a computer screen blank, cursor flashing with possibility, my hair damp from the night’s shower (that I shared with the dog who got skunked three days ago and needed another dose of something to fight the lingering skunk funk), listening to the chug of the washing machine and the static white noise coming through the baby monitor. Outside, our house’s Christmas lights are reflecting off of the wet pavement. And I am trying to find the words to express what my heart so deeply longs for in this season of Advent with young children.IMG_5033

It’s slowness. Care. Unhurried appreciation that I want most. More than anything. It’s my baby boy’s first Christmas and my daughter’s fifth. Their first Christmas together. My first Christmas as a mother of two. Why can’t the world see that and understand that I am desperate for the opportunity to cherish this? If Advent in its very soul embodies the spirit of expectation then why does the world make it so very hard to move slowly enough to do so? Christmas is a week away. We didn’t see Santa this year or ride on the Polar Express train. We haven’t baked. I love doing all of those things but they just didn’t happen and it’s because I didn’t force them to happen. Actually, I haven’t forced anything. And it has felt so good. Now I am not here to praise myself for finally doing what is best for our family and for our kids, because I have a lot of rushing and forcing in my past that I need to make up for. I’m not even here to tell you to “take it easy” this Christmas because in all honesty you’ve probably heard that message somewhere. But I will tell you that if you have been looking for an excuse to have a holiday season that is filled with less…you don’t need an excuse. You don’t. Now my gift to my father-in-law and his sweet wife is simpler and less involved that I had originally planned, and that’s bothering the perfectionist in me a great deal. But they don’t know how I wanted it to turn out. All they will know tomorrow when I show up at their house is that my children love them, we love them, and we will have a meaningful gift (and wine) to share. My neighbors might not get home baked cookies from me this Christmas, but they also know that I had a baby this year and I somehow doubt that they will be expecting cookies from the lady who only has time to get her mail every three or four days.

All I’m saying is that it is OK to not have a Santa picture to post on social media. It’s OK that the ornaments on your tree start halfway up because that’s where your one year old can’t reach them. It’s also OK to take your daughter to the Nutcracker ballet because that is the thing that will make her little ballerina heart sing. And to tell your husband on the day that it is pouring down rain that you still really want to go get a Christmas tree, but that you promise a back massage later.  Traditions are important. They are beautiful. They are cement to a family’s foundation and to a child’s youth. But you can have just a few of them and still be a good mom. Heck, a fantastic mom. When Mary said “yes” to the angel and “yes” to carrying Emmanuel, it was a simple but profound acceptance and an act of obedience from her heart. She didn’t have to do any more or any less than follow God’s plan. You and I don’t either. Mothering our babies through one of the most beautiful seasons of the year can be a profound but wonderfully simple thing if we let it.

My hope tonight is that however your heart celebrates the holiday that it can embrace a slow and beautiful simplicity. Happy Advent. Merry Christmas. And may your home be filled with glorious expectation.

12,778 thoughts on “Wonderful Expectation”

  1. I like to get my inspiration from really meaningful phrases said by truly great people like “Morality is not the doctrine of how we may make ourselves happy, but of how we may make ourselves worthy of happiness”, do you know where I can find thematic compiltaions of those?

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  3. Deus abençoe nosso irmão e amigo Paulo Freire. Adoro ler as obras dele> Sou educadora e procuro me inspirar em suas idéias maravilhosas e colocá-las em prática! Já levei textos de Paulo Freire para debates com minhas turmas do Magistério. Adoraram!Ele é uma dádiva de Deus para nós, afinal ele está em nossos corações para SEMPRE!Ass. : Susana

  4. YEAH!!!! I am thrilled for you and your sleeping loves. It sounds way to go to be true and after all this time I am still amazed. A week or so ago my 7 year old asked to go to sleep just after 7 (about an hour earlier than normal). He knows how to listen to his body, something I need to do more of! Thank you for sharing your story.

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  6. I don’t know what “public” ethics means but I was forced to study ethics in the social sciences at one point and I found the unit itself to be not too ethical. It was all about studying the worldly wisdom of the “great thinkers” who of course are all dead white guys who had way too much time on their hands. Mansplainers. Other than an amazing guest lecture from the amazing Moira Carmody, the material and the way it was delivered was totally pro status quo. If that’s the kind of ethics Hamilton is teaching then he’s probably doing a great job.

  7. This is so timely for me. I feel like I’ve been fighting all my life. Fighting for how things “should be”. I feel like I am going to give up a dream if I accept what is. Because “what is” is very lonely.Will have to think on this, so thank you for giving my thoughts some direction.[]

  8. La Coop des consommateurs de Lorette qui a acheté tout ce terrain commercial (sud-est) parlait d’un IGA, une pharmacie (le Jean Coutu) la caisse pop, et un « service de restauration ». Je n’ai pas encore trouvé d’information sur celui-ci. Un Tim Hortons serait très crédible. Il me semble aussi que le zonage avait été ajusté pour permettre une station service à côté du IGA (coin Chauveau-Coursol, il reste un petit terrain vague carré).

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  10. I had forgotten which flower and days for them to be worn at the Spring Carnival. I have now recorded this so that i will know whcih colour is for the correct days..I am a milliner from Cairns and been to several Cup carnivals and will be attending again this year. I think it is great for ladies to follow this tradition as well as the men.

  11. Вот он:Код для вставкиГ-н Обломов собственной персоной. Детей тоже ТАК воспитаешь? В таком случае они тебе и стакан воды в старости поленятся принести.

  12. I like to get my inspiration from really meaningful phrases said by truly great people like “That man is wisest who, like Socrates, realizes that his wisdom is worthless”, do you know where I can find thematic compiltaions of those?

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  13. Yes. Also, yes.I confess, I get a kick out of telling customers “No.” Specifically, when the answer is obviously yes, they’re just too…arrogant, ignorant, illiterate, mentally-incapable, other? to find the answer themselves. But then, I’m a dangerous vigilante of the service industry.

  14. biz şimdi 30 öğrenciyiz ve süper hocamızla ders işliyoruz.benim adım yusuf ve sigara içmiyorum.içenlere gıcık kapıyorum.kübra sakız çiğneme derste ve ilerde sakın sigara içme.

  15. Ate Shenanigans baka don sa patalastas na yon kinuha ang story na ito. Pinadala lang ito ng bro ko sa akin eh.Sign of true love yon ha! Imagine sharing of pustiso parang nagliptolelay na rin kayo ng asawa mo kasi parang nagshare na rin kayo ng laway at ng food na nginuya na niya pero di nalulon. May mga food bits na natira sa palate ng pustiso tapos pag suot mo namnam mo pa yung laway w/ ketchup and nginuyang pirasong tinapay ang pickles. Slurp mo na lang. Sarpsaaaaaaaaaaaa!Hahahahaha!

  16. Hey, Joel,Thanks for the clarification/retraction. Very responsive.I do not believe there is any indication at all, anywhere, that the St. Paul Police, Ramsey County Sheriff or the officer you mentioned conspired to find any loopholes or broke any rules. No calls were made, to my knowledge. Ms. Wilson took the gun course, passed it and her background was and is clean. I do not think there is a story here.Take care. I respect your adding to and vindicating the first amendment – the free press. We need more like you.Respectfully,Gary WolfLawyer for Michelle Rae Wilson

  17. You guys/gals are great! I’ll have to visit this blog more often. So how many inches we talking about for Paintsville? And Georgetown? I believe this is gonna be a doozy. Better to be prepared then not. It helps when you want to be comfortable. So get the batteries, generators (safely) ready! Keep warm, keep dry, and keep in touch.

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