Saturday’s Oatmeal

On Saturday, I woke up to two little toddlers in the kitchen.  The overly quiet aura in the house told me I should prepare myself for a surprise.  As I both cautiously and drowsily entered the hallway connecting our kitchen and living room I discovered my imaginative children playing in piles of dry oatmeal flakes pretending it was snow.  They looked at me with larger than life smiles as I quickly spotted the brand new oatmeal container completely emptied and abandoned in the corner.  Stunned, I wasn’t sure if I should scold or laugh or turn back for my bed. 

Jordan stared at me bravely full of questions:

"Mom, are you going to talk?  Mom, are you going to talk to everything beautiful?  Mom, are you going to talk to God?  Mom, are you going to talk to dad?  Mom, are you going to talk to the birds and the plants?  Mom, are you going to talk to me?"

I placed my kids in the tub.  Scrubbed the matted oatmeal out of their hair.  Sat them on the couch.  Let them sing and chatter as I started to sweep up mounds of pretend snow made out of whole grain cereal. 

Was I talking to God?  Or Shawn?  Or anyone for that matter?  Maybe quietly in my heart.  But, the bigger conversation happening inside of me was the peace I felt being a mom.  This is one of the first times I have felt in control as a mother since Shawn died, as if my role of motherhood is finally returning.  There was a sense inside me that said: you can handle this.  Even this large, unprepared mess. 

Jordan wasn’t done talking, "Mom, what should we do?"  "Clean it up." I finally spoke.  Madelynn started to sing, "Clean up. Clean up" to the tune of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.  Helping each other, we worked to put the house back in order.  Step by step, life comes back.      

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