Too often I get caught up in the moment, the stress, the inevitable chaos and I forget how fortunate we are. Yeah days are long, loud and crazy. Yep, messes big and small happen every single day. Sure money can be tight, things break at the worst time, and feeding and clothing our little tribe is a full time job. But every day, every single day, I get to be with the people I love more than anything in the world. I have a husband who is more than happy to jump in and do things for the kids and I, make dinner in a pinch and who regularly (especially lately) sends me to bed to rest. He walked to school today to meet Gray's bus because Gray wanted him there, Ryan made sure Gray was settled, walked home and then came to pick Teagan up from me so I could spend some time with friends. Not only did he do that, but he then took Teagan for a walk, brought her home and put her down for her nap and texted me to let me know they were a-ok and to enjoy myself and have fun. So many husbands would complain about having to do things like this, but mine did it all willingly and on his own because he wanted to, because it made him happy and allowed me to have fun.
My big kids had great first days at school. They came home bubbling with excitement and stories and news from their adventures today. I was met with hugs and smiles and excited little faces, and Teagan was scooped up by her siblings, hugged and kissed and loved on. Even Finn was included in the joy as Brittan hugged me and whispered a hello to her baby brother. I cannot tell you how that makes me feel. To see my children love each other, care for each other and show their joy is always amazing to me. I saw Brittan carefully put her hand on Grayson's back getting off the bus, a gentle guide away from the road, a loving but not overbearing symbol of her concern for him. Grayson told me all morning how Haven and ONLY HAVEN could walk him to class today, and tomorrow it would be Brittan, because he loves them both. The girls assured him that they would show him their classrooms again so if he needed them, he knew where to go. That means so much to me, it means we are fostering good and strong bonds between the kids, and I love seeing those relationships grow and change.
Sure my kids fight, Ryan and I argue, the kids make me angry, we are human! We are not a perfect family, in fact we are perfectly flawed, each and every one of us. I love us, I love our family unit. I think we are an interesting mix of people, some easy going, some uptight, some prone to happiness, others more reserved, joyous and silly, loud and active, we are one crazy bunch of people thrown together in this house. My children have learned to love each other in spite of their differences and flaws. They have also learned that we, their parents, are not perfect, that we make mistakes and need to apologize when we are wrong. This group, this tribe, this family of mine, I have never in my life imagined how much I could need them and love them.
Soon we will change again. So soon Finnian will come into our lives and we will examine him, his fingers, toes, eyes and ears. We will watch him the first few months to see who he looks like, acts like, if he is content, fussy, sweet or strong willed. We will learn who he is, what he likes, what he needs and he will etch his spot in this family, making himself a permanent part of our world, and leaving us to wonder how we ever existed without him. In less than 12 weeks, we will change again as a family, we will grow together one last time, and we will again be thankful for this good life.