This Summer was the last as the three of us. And through the bittersweet countdown until August when our new girl would arrive, we tried to hug Logan as much as we could and remind him how we have loved this time with just him. How God changed our worlds for the better with him will never be lost on us. This summer felt like the last of something special that has been created and nurtured over the last few years.
Sometimes, Kyle and I show up for life with high expectations. Okay, most of the time. Okay, all of the time. We’re just really good at it. We’re two years into this parenting thing and we still get surprised by the season of life we’re in. The baby and toddler stage can quickly fool you when it’s under control and then you remember your limitations after you say “bedtime” too soon. It’s good and right and we’re grateful, just caught off guard at times because again, high expectations.
Kids are funny in the way they take away some freedoms, and yet add so much depth and purpose to your days. I easily get caught in comparison and guilt and forget that Logan’s life doesn’t need to be full of movement. I’m not failing as a parent if I don’t have all the fun activities planned for him or if we go into the backyard to see our dog instead of the zoo. All he really needs in his tiny life right now is to be seen, loved on, and given room to explore and learn.
So, our Summer looked like puzzles in the living room, swinging in the backyard, and watching Logan organize, stack, and transfer just about everything in our home. We’ve painted, switched rooms up, hung out with friends at the pool. We worked hard not to schedule too much and to make some lasting family memories as three. We went on vacation where it took us the whole of three hours in the car while listening to Moana for the umpteenth time to realize we needed to adjust our agendas for the week.
It wasn’t always peaceful and easy. I could describe a good chunk of our Summer hours as chaotic and there was at least one tantrum thrown a day (I won’t say by who, but we’re all involved here if we’re honest). But looking back, I also see all the places where we were bored, where we rested. Thanks to my pregnancy sweet tooth and The Magnolia cookbook, I baked almost every other day. And thanks to the sun lingering at night, we worked hard to soak up the quiet nights we would soon lose.
There is a constant beat in my heart to not miss this. To not miss my life that God is writing right out in front of me. To slow down and watch Him engrave funny moments and dependence and goodness within the walls of my home. To laugh instead of find fluster when my toddler surprises himself with how far he can throw his water bottle. To hug instead of ignore when the tantrum rears its head for the fifth time in the hour. To watch my story instead of scroll my phone for discontentment and envy at the friends who aren’t confined to bedtimes and babysitters and lack of sleep.
After countless moments in the kiddie pool and finding things to fill the witching hour before bedtime, I believe we found contentment and grace these last few months. It can be easy to misplace seasons of calm and label them as complacent, mundane, or frustrating instead of good and holy and needed.
Our summer ended with a little girl who begins something new for us. This gentle and steady invitation to rest all year is making sense as we continue to hide within God’s silence and calm presence and adjust to being a new family of four.