i wrote this list of cool stuff to do five years ago and only just got around to this one.
my mom and mother in law were poking fun at me the other day for a trait i have that they find obnoxious. it sucked, being totally honest. but it's gotten me thinking...
my kids walk up to me and say something and i don't respond right away. to tell you the truth i hear them, but i don't hear them. i am aware of them and their needs but i live in a type of trance or daydream that involves total focus on what i am doing at the time. if i am folding laundry i live in that task and it takes some effort to come back. some times it is harder to reach me than others. my kids will keep saying the same thing to me for a good long time until i respond. the repetitive requests make my mom and mother in law uncomfortable and they said to me, "just answer them!"
my moms were speaking in jest and i know they would never want to hurt my feelings, but it is an area of insecurity for me so of course i felt a little wounded. i smiled and excused myself to lay in the hammock. i even put a towel on my head, which is pretty funny actually.
i've been thinking a lot about it. i don't like the implication that i am negligent because it takes me longer than normal to respond. as i was telling my husband i expressed, "it's almost like i can't help it, like i need a little extra time to process and plan." this triggered a thought.
ossi was just recently tested extensively for IQ. the anomaly they found that explained a lot of his difficulties relating to others and in following directions was that his language ability was extremely advanced while his processing speed was severely stunted. he possess remarkable resources but he has incredible difficulty accessing them quickly enough to meet the immediate expectations of the people around him.
as i bounced more ideas off of my husband (he is a faithful sounding board) i realized that the immediate needs do get met. i'm aware enough to snap out for real emergencies. for all the rest, they can wait. they will be ok.
instead i live in the long-run. i am constantly thinking about the bigger picture. i go into my mind and think of the ways that the kids are developing and the things they need to learn. i think of the things they are struggling with. i plan based on the long-term needs. i hear evy and finn fighting in the background. i think, "finn is struggling today, why? is it because he doesn't feel enough love right now? or maybe he needs more chances to serve." so i process the fighting too slowly to prevent a push or punch. i'm not aware enough to know exactly what the fight was about, but when i come out of my mind i have a plan. finn, let's make it right, and then cook some lunch together and talk.
every parent is working with different strengths and weaknesses. we all do the best we can. our parenting looks confusing to people whose brains are different than ours. since only the Lord can know our hearts i guess it's just best to assume that we're all working things out in our own way.
i feel confident that my greatest weaknesses can be my greatest strengths when i rely on the Lord. i know that i will never be able to make everyone around me perfectly comfortable or completely happy with my choices. but i know that i'm doing okay when i get onto my knees at the end of the day and feel the approval of my Heavenly Father manifest in a strong peace and abiding hope that we are on the right track.
even if it takes me 5 years to make a good plan happen.