This post is specifically dedicated for the purpose of enlightenment, as to the fact that the Cofer household is not always peaceful, as so many friends always tell me they envision it as. The hour: 5 o'clock. The scene: dinner preparation in the kitchen. And then we jump straight to the climax. I just finished getting all the ingredients on the cooktop, and the baby starts crying after waking from a short slumber. Now might I add that it is very rare that little man cries at all, so usually someone will jump in to rescue if my hands are full. Olivia flies in to help him, quickly picking him up. He is still crying, when more whales of screaming come from upstairs. Before the screams get any closer, my six year old jets on the scene. He's trying to tell me in his sweet little voice that his little toddler sister called him the "S word" (aka stupid-a big off limits word in our house). Eventually little sister happens upon the scene herself, falling over in fits of tears upon realizing that big brother had beaten her to the chase, and had already tattled on her fresh little mouth. Meanwhile, older teenage sister is pleading that all of the little ones that are making noise need to go upstairs, as they are getting on her nerves, and teenage brother is frantically going through the pantry after soccer practice, complaining about not having enough snacks. Obviously not phased by the noise, he is sooooo hungry. And nine-year-old sister is still bouncing the crying baby, informing me that he has gas bubbles. Ah yes, the calm Cofer house. This is what I call commotion in the ocean. I know that all you empty, or almost-empty-nesters are drooling with envy! Remember these days? Now I have learned that we cannot control these moments. They are going to explode, when they explode. Perhaps I could have had more snacks in the cupboard, or my toddlers in a planned activity at the table, but on more days than not, I am running on fly by the seat of my pants mode. Hence the explosions. Although I do not have control over the occurrence of the scene, I do have control over how I respond. And it must have been the concoction of just enough sleep last night, topped with a little late afternoon caffeine, and most importantly, remembering who God wants me to be as a parent, that resulted in my calm today. Maybe I had a different result yesterday, but today I was able to stay calm. And so today is what I focus on.
As a Roman Catholic celebrating this beautiful season of Lent, there is much self reflection, and yearning to draw closer to Him. There's an emphasis on repentance, sacrificial fasting, prayer, and giving, all in a traditional and beautifully orchestrated plan that draws us to live in His will. To surrender to his will, and die in ourselves. To produce fruit. Today my fruit was calmness.
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vine grower. He takes away every branch in me that does not bear fruit, and everyone that does he prunes so that it bears more fruit. You are already pruned because of the word that I spoke to you. Remain in me, as I remain in you. Just as a branch cannot bear fruit on its own unless it remains on the vine, so neither can you unless you remain in me. I am the vine, you are the branches. Whoever remains in me and I in him will bear much fruit, because without me you can do nothing.