I have 3 kids of my own who love to play and create messes, and when we had 5 additional kids over to play yesterday? Man, oh MAN, was my desire to hit pause and CLEAN UP a thing!
I’ll give myself a little credit: we would have made it fun to clean up! We would have turned on a song, had a little clean-up dance party, I would have helped them clean up in order to avoid extra tears and frustration (mostly from my own son), and let’s be real… I probably would have rewarded them with a single piece of candy when we finished (even though I’m a health coach by profession. 🤪 I believe in moderation in ALL things baby!)
But instead of asking them all to pause to help me clean up (because my clean freak overwhelm was BUZZING)…I had a feeling to just stop. So? I took a deep, cleansing breath, and just allowed myself to observe.
My 2-year-old daughter was enthralled with the Play-Doh I hardly ever let her play with.
My 4-year-old son was playing with his animals and dinosaurs and pretending they were destroying everything (and they were succeeding).
Our friends were playing with Play-Doh, building marble works, playing with cars, and fighting with lightsabers.
Basically? They were all having a blast.
They didn’t mind the mess around them.
They were soaking it in, playing with everything in sight, and just… living their best lives! So who am I to call a cease and desist order in the middle of their play… when it’s doing so much more good than harm to just allow the play.
Is there a time and place for cleanliness? Yes.
Is there a time and place for organization? Yes.
Is there a time and place for clean-up parties together? Yes.
Is there a time and place for messes? Yes.
Is there a time and place for unhindered play? Yes.
My older sister shared this amazing concept with me:
In motherhood, we desire three things:
• Our sanity
• To have meaningful and fun quality time with our children
It’s a rare and beautiful thing when all 3 of those things happen in the same day. So we need to learn to APPRECIATE those days, instead of expecting them.
Most days? We’ll get 2 out of the 3.
We’ll be able to have a clean house, and our sanity, but we didn’t really get to have quality time with our kids.
We’ll be able to play with our kids, and have a clean house, but our body and brain will be so exhausted from trying to do it all that our sanity will go out the window.
We’ll be able to have fun with our kids, and have our sanity, but our house will be an absolute disaster (like me yesterday!)
And momma? That’s okay. It’s a rare and beautiful thing when quality time, cleanliness, and sanity all happen in the same day. So we need to learn to APPRECIATE those days, instead of expecting them.
We need to give ourselves grace mommas.
We need to give our kiddos grace mommas.
We need to not take ourselves so seriously mommas.
We need to allow them to play.
Let’s take a deep, cleansing, breath.
The chores can wait.