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In the thick of motherhood

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So there I was, babywearing a nearly six-month old. Pushing a nearly three year old. Trying to avoid other carts and dirty looks in Trader Joe’s, and see whether the sample of the day was something my toddler would eat. (It was mushroom stuffed tortellini – so, no).

I was wondering why we were even there. I had already done the bulk of the shopping at the big warehouse store. But my son had insisted we “need to go to Trader Joe’s” when we got in the car. I asked him, “What are we going to buy there?” He replied, “Nothing.”

It was such a perfect toddler answer, I just had to take him. And anyway, what else did we need to be doing?

Isn’t this the only time in my life when I’ll be able to follow a toddler’s whim?

Probably. So off to Trader Joe’s we went.

As I waited for my sample of the day, a man with curly hair all salt-peppered approached and asked if he could help us find anything, help with anything. I smiled and said, “No, we’re just looking.”

He smiled. A true, warm smile. And said, “Wow, you’re really in the thick of motherhood, aren’t you?”

His phrase caused a thousand scenes to reply in my mind:

The sticky toast on the table as we rush out,

dancing in a forest of Christmas trees,

the late night feedings,

wearing crazy Christmas hats,

the potty seat in the back of the car,

the diaper laundry piling up,

the bounce of the bed every morning when my toddler hops up telling me “It’s Wake Up Time!”…

so many many motherhood moments…

The man continued: ”It’s really the best time of your life. You may not think so now, but you’ll look back and see.”

In that moment. With my two children, one warm against me, large brown eyes peering over the edge of the baby carrier, and one brightly pointing out everything he saw in a voice that always inflects upward at the end of phrases…

I knew.

I smiled and said: “You’re absolutely right. It IS the best time of my life!”

From Wiktionary:

thick of things (noun)

(idiomatic) A central or major role in a situation; a position in which one is surrounded by or very involved in complex, changing events.

In the thick of motherhood. Isn’t that the truth!?

Thank you, kind, anonymous sir, for reminding me of my “major role” in this “complex, changing event” called motherhood!

When have you felt most in the thick of motherhood?

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LisaOctober 15, 2013 - 1:32 pm

Beautiful post… I couldn’t agree more… This made me cry a little as our beautiful boy just turned 4 in August and we are definitely past the toddler stage….he is becoming a Big Boy…

I came across your site as we are considering homeschooling, so I love your ideas and might just break out my bag of chia seeds and try your muffin recipe…I’ve been using them mainly in smoothies but am missing them as its not really smoothie weather right now…

I agree with the other posters about the looks… Families with young ones are a beautiful thing… Enjoy!!

T Rex MomJanuary 13, 2013 - 2:32 pm

This was wonderful. Exactly where your are.

The first of these types of moments I had was when I was breastfeeding my son and pregnant with my daughter. I have had many such others since then. And I will often get comments like “You have your hands full” to which I reply, “Yes, but I love it.” The gentleman was right, you have to embrace it because some day you will look back and miss those moments.

Crunchy Beach MamaJanuary 11, 2013 - 9:22 am

love this post. SO true!

I try to think about this the most at the end of the day. I am usually so tired of just all the noise in this house by then. I think to myself that one day it will be so silent and I will want all the loudness back.

DeborahJanuary 10, 2013 - 4:53 pm

Thank-you for sharing this precious post! I love the scenes you share that came to mind… ;)
Deborah recently posted..Thoughts on “evangelical obedience”

Trisha W.January 10, 2013 - 11:04 am

I hope people’s dirty looks were at the sample and not at your sweet little family.

anne perryJanuary 10, 2013 - 1:50 am

Thank you… nice reminder for when I feel crazy with a 2 year old and a 2 month old. I love trader Joe`s!!

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