Sticky messes scatter on the floor and dirty dishes bloom across the counter like wildflowers and a golden haired girl stands by the sink, making lunches.
When a fever, so fierce it reminds me of malaria, takes me down for forty-eight hours, I get to see the view from weakness. How you all do family when I can’t be the glue.
And what I see is beautiful.
The way you support each other. The way you do life as a team. The way you hold each other’s hands through hard moments.
I am too weak to say much but I feel proud, so proud.
Proud when I hear encouraging words, when I hear the very things I say coming out of your mouths. Proud when I see that without me, the medicines still get taken, the clothes still washed, the hugs are given and everyone leaves for school with water bottles and jackets.
Proud of my husband who does it all without complaint and then does more. And who looks so good doing it.
Proud of my firstborn who doesn’t know if she wants children of her own but who mothers effortlessly in my absence. Who brings such sunshine and courage into our home when I’m not strong enough to offer any.
Proud of my oldest son who does hard things with great love. Who doesn’t complain despite the difficulties. Who always offers me his strength.
Proud of my two littles who are learning trust. Who fall into the arms of their dad, their big brother and sister. Proud of them for being brave, because having your mom so sick after you’ve already lost one mom is so, so hard. Proud that they too are stepping up in all the ways they know how.
I’m so glad I get to nurture you all so much on a daily basis. And I’m so thankful that without me able to, your character shows up. You don’t just do what has to be done, you do it with joy and kindness, with a sweetness born of mercy.
This is the view from here.