They are darling and precious. And they are loud and strange.
Sometimes sweet, but usually sassy. Sometimes well-mannered, but often a train wreck.
All too often I find myself whispering, "Don't grow weary in doing good because someday I'll reap a harvest." Most days, based on behavior and attitudes, I am convinced my harvest will be explosive in size and more than heaven and earth can bear.
No sooner did I sit down and Jax came running toward me, Annalyse was calling for me from the top of the stairs, Micah started crying from somewhere upstairs, and Grady Lee came pouting coming down the stairs.
"Guys, I want to drink my coffee and enjoy 15 minutes of alone time. No one talking to me. No one touching me. No one by me. Unless there's an emergency, go where I don't see you and find something to do."
"But mom, you just took a shower and had a few minutes of alone time. Why do you need more?"
As I perused some produce, he suddenly let out wails of "BAAAALLL! BAAAALLL!" I whirled around and didn't see a ball anywhere. I tried to quiet him and say there were no balls here and we'd get a ball at home.
His wailing persisted, reaching even higher volumes, and he frantically pointed.
And then my eyes caught sight of the "ball" he wanted. On the bottom of a cart many, many, many feet away was a nice, round watermelon. And, of course, in order to get out of the area I had to navigate by said grocery cart.
As I tried to nonchalantly stroll by with him wailing "BAAAALLL!" the lady next to the watermelon bearing cart turned to Jax to talk to him and try to comfort him.
I'm usually up for small chit chat at the store, but this time I simply said, "He thinks your watermelon is a ball. He's throwing a tantrum. He won't be quiet anytime soon. I need to keep on moving."
And I whizzed along to the dairy section, perhaps getting the cart up on two side wheels as I raced around the corner.
I simply replied by saying we weren't even to the road yet and she had plenty of time to get her seat belt on. Rather than calmly strap herself in, she responded with hyperventilating wails.
"The armpits of my seat won't go down and I can't get my seat belt on!"
Armpits of your seat? Ah yes, you mean the arm rests.
By now Grady Lee was standing up trying to help her and in the process stepped on the end of a pool noodle, which sent the other end flying into the air and slapped Jax on the face.
Enter more wailing.
As Grady Lee was helping Annalyse, Micah unbuckled himself and stood up to try and comfort Jax and be sure his face was okay. As he leaned forward his elbow jammed Grady Lee in the ribs and Grady Lee responded with a yell and a punch to Micah.
You guess it: more wailing.
And as I sat, still buckled in and waiting to get out of the driveway, I was doing everything I could to not join the chorus of wailing behind me.
Going to the pool sure is a lot of work.