When I was eight years old I wore purple unicorn sneakers and yarn ribbons in my hair. I scraped my knobby knees jumping off the front steps to escape a lizard. I fashioned a reading nook with my Lady Lovely Locks sleeping bag and a stack of books from the school library. The minute we came home from school, I dropped my backpack and found my quiet spot to crack open Spunky’s Diary for the fifth time.
My mom headed straight for the kitchen and began to make dinner. She sang hymns under her breath and I heard her when the electric can opener stopped abruptly. She seemed to be in her happy place, stepping from refrigerator to counter and back to stove top, humming and stirring dinner for six other people. Even after being at work for hours, she still seemed happy to be where she was. Happy to be doing what she had to do.
What she “got” to do.
I have clear memories of thinking I would just call out for pizza every night when I was a mom— you know, so I could read more books. (Nerd alert.)
I thought that grown-ups could do whatever they wanted because no one was bossing them around.
I thought my parents both worked so hard because they enjoyed it, when it was actually more like– they had five hungry guppies eating everything in sight and needing new shoes every four months.
Now I know.
Now I know that what grown-ups really get to do, is clean cold scrambled eggs out of the sink drain and be thankful for mouths to feed.
Grown-ups get to peel themselves from a warm duvet at midnight when a tiny person needs a hug and not really mind.
Grown-ups get to buy each other ceiling fans and small appliances and know that the experience of building a life together is really where it’s at.
Grown-ups get to catch baby spit-up with their bare hands, and then laugh about it.
Grown-ups get to be the former generation of big kids who do the things they have to do with joy.
I want for my children to see that. I want them to hear me humming at the end of a long day. For them to see me smile when the hours till bedtime are stretching and so is my patience. I want them to notice me delighting in my life– all of it.
Because once upon a time, this reality was more or less exactly what I dreamed of.
There is so much more that we could say on this topic, but let’s leave it in the hands of the very wise Anne with an E.
I made a printable with a lovely quote from Anne of Green Gables for you and I. There are two font options, so just pick the one you like the most and download below.
Hang it near your desk or washing machine or kitchen sink so that we may remember– We may not choose the task, but we may certainly choose the perspective.
Download either PDF by clicking the link above & save it to your computer. Then either print out your 8×10 print at home, or email to your local print shop or office supply. I would suggest Cardstock or a high quality paper. Then just frame it and hang it!
Be kind, and please always give proper credit. © Cynthia M. Stuckey. For personal use only, not to be altered or sold. http://www.happygostuckey.com