Parenting

Laundry

Laundry.  It piles up around us sometimes.  Boys drop it on the floor instead of the bag … “Put it in the bag, please, hun ..” said over ten times in a morning … till I’m weary of my own voice and weary of the piles of unfinished mothering and attempts to pour in all that is needed for a life in short eighteen years …

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And some days we just leave it all where it is and go walking.  We pack our paints, hit the bike path, don’t look back and sit by the lake and laugh and create and drink in views of egrets and ducks and people walking dogs … those “laundry can wait days” give life the pace a savoring heart needs. 

And, then when someone just pops by, we have to put the laundry away so it isn’t sitting out for every one to look at.  Just like so much of life stashed away from critical eyes who may see the unfinished, unwashed, unkempt parts of me and fear that you won’t find me as tidy as you’d like.  But, there are always those friends who come in and do the laundry with you.  Those are the keepers.

And there’s the laundry sorting where you think about each boy and his jeans torn in wild abandon on a grassy hill or a bicycle stunt and his carefree love of living out loud with his neighbor friends.  And you stand and fold and smile about those boys who just can’t turn a sock right-side-out to save their lives, but they sure turn me right side out most days just by filling this house with all the life it can handle.

And when all the laundry is folded and stashed away and I have things lined up as I like and the boys are tucked in and the night light in the hall is on, if it’s been one of those days, I can thank God for new mercies.  But if it’s been the other kind, those memory making, heart quaking, eat-em-up days, then I can sigh and pull up my covers and just thank God for all of it — the dirt, the wash and the folding.  

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7 Comments

  • Reply
    Whitney
    October 17, 2013 at 9:56 PM

    Those "laundry can wait days" sound inviting! Makes me want to come :). Thanks for sharing!

  • Reply
    HeartsHomeward
    October 18, 2013 at 7:16 AM

    Thanks, Whitney! They are treasured days, to be sure.

  • Reply
    Anita
    October 18, 2013 at 7:17 AM

    Ah, the beauty of laundry when one looks on it as service (this has never been my strong point). I find that now that my girls are grown, it's easier to serve with love (I'll happily do their laundry when I visit them at college), I wish I would have had a better attitude in my younger years!

  • Reply
    HeartsHomeward
    October 18, 2013 at 8:28 AM

    Anita,
    You are so true. Having a Brother Lawrence attitude — or Mother Theresa — doing the small things with great love and as unto the Lord, right where He places us — this is living for Him. Thank you so much for that sweet reminder. We only get to do their laundry for so long and then the loads are lighter in some ways. But I'm sure I'll miss these days when they pass.

  • Reply
    Amy von Borstel
    October 18, 2013 at 8:35 AM

    I love this post. The "laundry can wait days" are the BEST!!

    Amy (liveabundantlynow.com)

  • Reply
    Barbie
    May 10, 2014 at 9:42 PM

    I am so glad you shared this again today. I was so blessed by it!

  • Reply
    HeartsHomeward
    May 11, 2014 at 7:30 AM

    Thanks, Barbie. I thought it would be a good thing even though I wrote it last year. It really encompasses our mothering hearts and how we need to let go of the externals so we can just love those around us well. Love you!

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