Thursday, October 24, 2013


My son left the house this morning wearing cowboy boots, pajama pants, and his orange scooter helmet. The sleepover at Grandma and Grandpa's house will include plenty of flare.

The KFC I frequented during my first pregnancy has since folded and turned into a Popeyes. I'm feeling some guilt about this. Could I have saved them if I'd become pregnant just a few months earlier?  Were my regular drumstick runs the only thing keeping them in business in 2010-2011? The world will never know.

I had coffee with a bright-eyed, bushy tailed Ole this morning. He was so optimistic and filled with potential, I could have used a cup of coffee before our meeting to prepare for his energy. I listened carefully and became inspired. Then he lapped up my insights and advice as though I know what I'm talking about. He made me feel old, but in a good way.

The weather is crisp. It's perfect for walks in the dark with your hands shoved deep into pockets.

I love Mentos. I'd never tried them until I met a Zion member who works in a candy factory and puts packages of them in my office mailbox. They're underrated and delicious. I also have a biscotti dealer and latte bearer at church, so I'm sitting pretty.

There are so many people running for mayor in Minneapolis this fall. They all have wonderful gifts and they are proof that this city is very loved. I've been spending my free time reading about them and it makes me hopeful.

My congregation figured out that my babies will use approximately 1600 diapers during my maternity leave. This fact is depressing on several levels, but it does sound like a have a really, really long maternity leave. I've decided I will measure it in diapers instead of weeks when I feel like it's going to quickly.

Last night a 5 year old proudly showed me his homework. A baby spit up on my shoulder. A mentally ill person pooped in the bathroom by my office with the door wide open. A neighbor called me and over shared about her blister. A woman begged me in broken English for rent money I couldn't provide and then we held each other for awhile. Everyone at Recovery Worship had something beautiful to say about Exodus 6 and Patience. I ate soup with people I only know because of Lyndale and Jesus.

Tomorrow I have nowhere to be and no one to wake me up. So I will lie in bed and give thanks for all these piles. I will rest and stretch in the peace for awhile. I will laugh at the clock and roll over again. I will get lost in all the good things about this chapter - the beautiful thoughts and the wild grace that comes in waves to move me forward.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

favorite one.


When you are super silly or about to throw a fit, I usually ask you if you'd like to hear a secret. The invitation causes you to pause for a moment while a wide grin spreads across your face. You come barreling toward me and lean in for news that is always true and always the same:

Out of all the little boys who live in my house, YOU are my!

I realize that out of context and to an adult cynic, this declaration sounds very creepy. (Am I keeping a few in the cupboards and others in the basement? Am I the old woman who lived in a shoe?) But you are wildly flattered by these words and always ask to hear "another secret". So, with gladness, I tell you again and again.

I used to wonder how I would tweak this secret declaration if you were to have a brother. But we recently found out that there is no need to manipulate your Gospel according to Mom. This word will always be true because it sounds like you've got sisters on the way!

I kept a pregnancy journal with you, Jasper. I wrote about and to you long before you lived on the outside. But I haven't been doing that for your sisters quite yet. I am still too wrapped up in talking to you, teaching you, reflecting about you, and being in awe of you during this transition. I have a hard time imagining my relationship with them apart from you right now because you are the Known and you are in the Flesh.

So I'm sure my words for them will come. And I'm sure, at times, you'll think I have too many words for them and not enough for you. But, in light of our secret truth and your three year head start, be confident that there is a special place for you deep in my soul.

I know what it's like to be the oldest. And what it's like to have two siblings - younger, close in age, and of the same gender. I know what it's like to be entrusted with responsibilities and to walk while the little ones are carried. I know what it's like to watch your siblings have a unique relationship and then to figure out how you get to be close to each and both of them in your own way. I know what it's like to mostly love and only sometimes resent being first. I know what it's like to blaze the trail and challenge the rules that have never been put to the test before.

I get excited about watching you in this role, navigating it with unique style and perspective. You will be a wonderful eldest and, no matter how your sisters change this dynamic we've got cooking, I will always be attune to your place in this family of five.

I thought all these things while we napped in my bed today. I drifted in and out of sleep, relaxed by your rest beside me, stirring now and then to watch your lips and hear your breath. And then I awoke one final time to you in my face saying, "It's wake up time! Oh, Mommy. You are my favorite Mommy."

And you are my favorite Jasper. So remember - as I find words for your sisters and things continue to change, our old saying will always be true:

Out of all the little boys who live in my house, YOU are my very favorite one.

Love, Mommy