A part of me is in a constant state of mourning, it seems. I have so very much to be grateful for; more inspiration, love & blessings than I could ever really use. More wonderful memories than I could ever really remember. More ideas than I can ever actually do. More opportunities to make a difference than I could ever actually take advantage of. More boys than I can ever totally handle or manage. And yet...I often find myself feeling a bit blue about it all. It's the passing of it that hurts. It's the reality that things that I so look forward to come & then, they're gone. It's the fact that anything I actually take on or enjoy or look towards will come, & then, go, as well. I feel that way with my older two a lot, actually. I'm with them constantly, & they do make me a bit frazzled a couple of times a day, it's true. And yet, still I wish I had more time. That I could freeze their ages forever. I always think that having siblings is the best gift ever: real life-long witnesses for all that they'll ever go through. I also think it's hard on them, though. To constantly be put on hold & told to wait or to hush or wind down or to be more gentle or to include their brother or to grow up faster than they're ready. Whether or not any of that is actually good for them (I suspect it is, whether it's communicated through tough love, gritted teeth, nonchalance, a real intentional loving heart or non-violent communication), I can't help but feel a bit guilty. I wish sometimes that each boy was the only boy, that I was a perky 25 year-old mama, that I had the organizational capacity to do every activity I want to do with him, that it actually works to keep them up into the wee hours of the night. I wish I could read one an entire chapter book each night. I wish that I could form a marching band with the other & march all over town 'till dawn. I wish that my baby never had a spill because I was right there. But there are dishes to be washed, calls to be made, laundry to be done, a sweet husband to visit with, bread to be baked, toys to be cleared, picnics to be made, baths to be drawn, eyeliner to be applied - that's my little luxury so that when I see myself in the mirror midday I still look wide awake. I realize then, that it's not guilt - guilt is a complaint with a payoff. As you can see above, these boys are so fine. They get all the love they need from eachother. Even when they fight it's because they're so darn committed to being right in the other guy's space. It's mourning. Wishing it was all with me, that I was there for every moment. It's just a bit of sad that comes from loving life & family so very much.