Thursday, April 9, 2009

Surrounded by Love, Support in the Hard Times

What do you do when you have a sick kid, an intense week filled with caring for kiddos with no built in mom time or down time? Call a friend! I have a friend who is incredibly gifted at creating space for people to worship God. She called me last week and asked if she could come over and tell the story of the Good Shepherd and Psalm 23, using props, and help create a space for me to worship and pray amidst the chaos of our week. It was a wonderful time. The girls got into the story because of how appropriately she told it, connecting it to them and using the props to keep their interest and draw them towards God. With them engaged, I was able to find some space inside my head to turn towards God again, instead of constantly engaging in their care. I was even able to sit in one place long enough to finish an entire cup of tea! Mitch wonders why I ever bother to try and make tea because he finds my cup still sitting on the counter in the evening, a marker of my failed attempt to find some quiet time in my day. So you can see why it meant a lot to me to actually be able to finish an entire cup of tea.
We created a 'feast' on our coffee table as part of our story telling and I was able to use elements of it to pray and sink into the presence of God. A much needed soaking. Here is a picture of the table and my almost empty cup of tea. Thank you, Michelle, for listening to the Spirit and investing in my life, for creating a space for me to pray.

And what do you do when you, the Mom, are sick and your kiddos are healthy, full of life and unquenchable kid energy? Call a friend! Yesterday I was feeling quite under the weather and had a fever. I just needed to sleep and didn't think I could make it until nap time, especially given the unlikely probability of all three girls sleeping at the same time. (Mitch, I'll leave figuring out the exact probability to you). But my friend Gina was wonderful and took the two older girls for 2 hours in the morning while Ruthie and I slept. They came home just in time for their naps, Ruthie stayed asleep, and I got to keep sleeping. Then Gina took the girls to a Family Housing activity in the afternoon for another hour. Blessings on your head Gina, that had to be quite an interesting time trying to guide 3 kiddos in a painting activity. Hats off to you. Our girls loved it and I needed it. Thank you.

I feel so lucky to have this kind of community around me, people who are willing to be family to me when Mitch and I need it. People who can step in when Mitch and I are failing to make ends meet and can hold us up. People who can turn us back to God, who can be a window for us to see Him more clearly. People who in the past couple of months have taken over some of the logistics of life for us so that we have been freed up to focus on the needs of our girls and spending time with them. For all our talk about independence in the USA, I'm not sure that is my value. I'm pretty dependent on those around me. I need them. Hopefully, maybe not until another season of life comes along, but someday hopefully I can be that kind of friend to those around me. Hopefully we can teach our girls by our words and our example of giving and receiving what it means to be true community to those around us.


bethany said...

Hi Katie,
I am loving your blog. We made it back home. Sorry to hear you are sick. I would come over and take care of you if I could. Tell your girls that I love their drawings. They are very talented.

akamilby said...

Oh I'm so glad you have good friends to take care of you. Friends are such a blessing, aren't they? Just like sisters!

Anonymous said...

Okay, Katie. Since you asked:
You have said that the most likely half-hour time period for all three girls to be asleep is 2-2:30, and we'll assume the probability outside of that time period is pretty negligible. Josie is asleep at that time about 4 out of 5 days. Ruthie is asleep at that time about 3 out of 5 days and Anna 1 out of 5. So
P[all three asleep]=(P[J])(P[R])(P[A])
(assuming that each girl sleeping at that time is statistically independent of the others which probably isn't exactly true)
P[3 asleep]=(4/5)(3/5)(1/5)=0.096
That means about a 10% probability on a given day of having all three girls asleep for a half-hour (with some simplifying assumptions). Now factor in the probability that there is not something pressing to do that will take up at least 15 minutes of that half-hour . . .
--The Enginerd

katie said...

You crack me up, Mitch! Anna keeps asking me over and over what's so funny and I'm not sure how to explain it to her, so I just told she has a funny Dad. She didn't question that one! i love you, Mitch.

Anonymous said...

I missed this post. Just decided to look below the jumping pictures and found it. So glad you have friends to help, a blessing to you and to me.
love you,

Anonymous said...

Such a sweet and necessary story. Well said, Katie. (from the "other" Katie)