Ever since my crying heap of a mess on the first day of school, I’ve slowly been adjusting to life at home with just one.

It’s like a weird out-of-body experience. The last time I just had one at home with no one in preschool or any kind of Mother’s Day Out was 14 years ago.

Our days consist of … just whatever. The mornings are laid back, since Gianna doesn’t wake up until 8:30 or 8:45. I know. I’m in shock. No one has EVER slept that late in this house. After I get everyone off to school, she’s still snoozing, and I have a good hour to eat breakfast (in silence), catch up on emails and do laundry.

Weird, right?

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This time with just one has afforded me a fair amount of time to think since she’s not exactly of the talking persuasion. At least not intelligibly, yet. It’s also given me time to breathe, to say no to things I don’t want/can’t attend, to sloth around in yoga pants and to suffer through my PT homework. She’s quite the cheerleader on all that, I’ll say. The last few months we’ve really delved into how do we thrive and grow as a family. I think it’s part broken knee, part high schooler, part veteran parent, part Holy Spirit – not necessarily in that order. Sorry, God.

As providence would have it, Jen Fulwiler and I started chatting via text. You may just hear more from both of us on a future show of hers. I’ve got some praying to do before I go on the air!

Gianna’s latest antics are standing, just enough to get us all excited she’s going to take a step and then, NOTHING. She gets so excited she’s standing, that she just sits right back down. I know I will be supremely proud of her newest accomplishment when it happens, but I am keenly aware that this crawling baby stage may never happen again in our home. While that brings a twinge of sadness to my heart, I’m trying hard to lean into the joy.

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Earlier this week on Instagram I shared a photo of her on the back pew at church, happily eating a goldfish. This was minutes after she was practically singing a homily with her newfound set of pipes. There were quite a few smiles, glances and turned heads at the high school Mass. But for once, I didn’t mind one bit. I didn’t rush out of the church to quiet her, I just calmly redirected and enjoyed that moment.

How good it is to be the mom of a squirmy, happy, normal 16-month-old. Yes, I’m the 41-year-old mom in the back wrangling a baby and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I think that’s perspective I’ve only recently been able to appreciate. When my high schooler came home from school that day, he grinned and said to me, “I heard you in Mass.” And I smiled.

May we all be heard like that in Mass, not just to the people around us, but to God. I’m fairly certain He’s hoping we’ll be there, with hearts open, ears listening and voices at the ready to sing his praises.

It appears Gianna already got the memo.

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6 Comments

  1. Mary on September 11, 2015 at 8:23 am

    I love this post!! Love it. Yes, this is precious time. There may not be another little one in your home again, so leaning into the joy is an awesome thing. Don’t worry about the future, God’s already got that covered. I promise.

    I cannot wait to hear about what’s in store with you and Jen!! Such exciting news. Pray hard my friend. I think you would do fabulously well on the radio. So.very.excited.for.you.

    I will be praying for your discernment.

  2. Nicole on September 11, 2015 at 8:59 am

    Definitely a new season for you, but enjoy it! Sounds like it’s right where you need to be right now.

  3. Julie G on September 11, 2015 at 9:58 am

    What a lovely post and what a doll Gianna is!?

  4. Abby on September 11, 2015 at 2:59 pm

    I find becoming an (almost) 40 year old parent is one of the best things that ever happened to us! Miles an early walker has hit the throw himself on the ground and have a fit phase-I recall the others doing it. But this time it just cracks me up-by the time he gingerly gets himself to the floor he has forgotten what he’s mad about! I’m so jealous about that 8:30 business-six a.m. everyday!

  5. Nora on September 16, 2015 at 9:11 am

    I just have to say, your posts always touch me. I’m taking a few classes this Fall and had to bring my 13 month old with me the first day. You wouldn’t believe how many weird looks I got when she dared to do so much as open her mouth. I felt uncomfortable at first but then realised that I shouldn’t have anything to worry about. So I stayed in the room, despite the looks and frowns. It was such a good experience!

    Enjoy your wonderful time together. And especially the late mornings – we get them too from time to time if we’re lucky 😉

    • Kathryn on September 21, 2015 at 8:35 am

      Good for you, Nora! All the world should hear baby babbles. It reminds us of the beauty of life.

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