Please Excuse the Mess

Yes, please.  Excuse the mess.

There’s a pile of laundry in my living room.  Toys in the entry way.  And in everyone’s way–all over the house.  Strollers in the dining room.  There’s clean dishes in the sink to be put away.  I need to finish folding the laundry that’s still on the racks.  It’s been dry a few days now.  I need to plan dinner.  Finish cleaning the kitchen.  There’s applesauce smudged on the table six inches from my computer. 

This week, I have cleaned bathrooms, bedrooms, and the living room.  I’ve cleaned the kitchen.  Over and over.  And over.  I have swept and mopped.  The laundry was done…it was.  I had washed it, folded it.  Put it away.  I did the dishes.  I’ve wiped up every surface in the eating and cooking areas a million times.  Per day.

But, I look around.  And it looks like I’ve dong nothing this week.

Please excuse the mess.

But, please.  Don’t take that as an apology.  Because I stopped.  At some point during the day–each day–I stopped.  Stopped wiping.  Stopped cleaning.  Stopped sweeping and mopping.  I stopped folding and putting away.

And I looked down.  Into those precious faces that seem to mature far too fast.

And we lived.

I stopped cleaning.  And caring.  Instead, I made bubble solution.  And took all of my kitchen utensils outside.  And we made bubbles in the warm sunshine.  I put three tiny hands into messy paint and we made hand print pictures.  We played in the wading pool.  Baked coffee cake and cookies.  We took a walk to the park. I tickled and snuggled. And we laughed. 

Please excuse the mess.  Just kick it out of the way.

Because, someday, there will be no bubble solution, no slotted spoon tossed into the yard.  There will be no grass in the wading pool–there will be no wading pool at all.  The tickles and the giggles will be sporadic.  And then nonexistent.  The applesauce drying next to my computer will be gone and the table will be immaculate.  The laundry will be done quickly, with no distractions.  The dress-up lying on the floor will not be there.  The hands will be too big for the hand print nonsense.

Please excuse the mess.  If you need me, I will be in the kitchen making cookies.  Or next to the wading pool. 

I will be living.  The housework will get done.  Eventually.  Not as fast as before.  When the house was silent.  Before life filled it.  Before I started–we started–living.  Really living.

Please excuse the mess.  I am getting ready to add to it. 

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