Sunday, February 8, 2015

Sunday afternoons

Ah, Sunday afternoon.  As of late, the most treasured two hours of my week (aside from every minute with my precious children, of course).

Joel takes Benjamin on Sunday afternoons to play with a few of the local babies.  The big boys insist on joining, for fear of missing something remotely fun.  Which leaves me... all by myself!

Sunday mornings are chaos around here.  Somehow, on weekdays, I get all three kids breakfasted, clothed, lunches packed and out the door by 8 (ish).  But on Sundays there are two of us.  There are no lunches to pack.  And we CANNOT get out the door before 10:30.  No matter how we plan and prepare we are always running out of the house and always, always late for church.

So after I drop off the boys on Sunday afternoons I drive back home.  When I walk in the door it looks as though a bomb exploded.  I start to panic.  My insides feel all chaotic.

But then I take a deep breath.  Close my eyes.  And listen for a minute to the blissful quiet.  I look around and no one is tugging on my leg or asking me to play a game or begging for a snack.

And so I hang up MY coat, put away MY boots, walk calmly to the iPod and push play.

The house fills with that day's female-singer-of-choice, as loud as my ears can handle.

I start in the far corner of the downstairs.  Picking up crayons and placing them lovingly in their small, cardboard home.  Arranging the pillows just so on the couch.  Plumping the one on our cozy, gray armchair.  Wiping the table.  Sweeping the floor.

And finally... the dishes.  I wash and I scrub and I belt whatever song is playing at the very top of my lungs, pausing occasionally to close my eyes and really let loose.  The sun winks its final good-bye as I gaze out the kitchen windows.

I get so sad when the dirty dishes run out, so I wipe every inch of the counter and I scour the room for messes because the music is moving me and my kids aren't and I just don't want it to stop.

The moment I put down the sponge my phone rings.  Every time.  And so I put my boots back on and zip up my coat.  I look around one last time and I soak in the order and the clean and the quiet conformity.  I say good-bye to it, until next Sunday, and walk out the door.

I open only one car door.  Buckle only one buckle.  I drive in complete quiet for three minutes before my boys pile in.  Before they fill the car with fighting and laughter and hurried, excited chatter.

I suppose I should go out for coffee or take a nap or sit in the middle of all that mess and watch TV.  But it feels so peaceful... bringing order to the chaos.  Connecting to the singers and the songs and being alone but not feeling alone at all.

Another Sunday afternoon.  Just me and my sponge.


  1. Great post. This is my life too as a mother. Cleaning is often what I do with my free time. My alone time is spent cleaning up a dwelling that I share with others. I am not bitter about it ( most days), just realized that this is my reality. It is therapeutic when the music is playing. However, today I learned do not drink your glass of wine beforehand otherwise you just get very sleepy. ;)

    1. It is totally therapeutic! Perfect word to describe it! I had to laugh at your glass of wine comment. I often thought a glass of wine would make that time perfect, but I always have to drive and pick up my family afterwards, so it's out of the question. But yes, I could also see it being very un-motivating:)