I plunked the squirmy baby down in the sand and began to fill a plastic mold of an ice cream cone. I made animated noised and smiled big as I flipped the mold over. "Ta-Da!" I cheered as I uncovered the mold to reveal a perfect replica of sandy ice cream. The baby squealed, clapped and mimicked my cheer. Again, I scooped. Again I repeated the charade of shock over the uncovering of the sandy shape. Each time my son's laughter grew stronger, wilder. He loved every bit of it, and yet, I had gone into auto pilot mode. The smile was frozen on my face, and my motions were animated, but I had checked out mentally. I was wondering how many times I was going to have to do this. I was thinking about the book, buried in the bottom of the jogger, I was hoping to read.
Do it again.
And I scooped, cheered, and waved. An image of ice coffee drifted across my mind, how close was it to nap time? Do it again.
Scoop, cheer, wave.
I felt tired, sapped of joy, weary. But the repetitive action loosened a strand of words in my head,
"Do it again"
and the rest of a quote tumbled down from a shelf in my mind, "Because children have abounding vitality, because they are in spirit fierce and free, therefore they want things repeated and unchanged. They always say, "Do it again"; and the grown-up person does it again until he is nearly dead. For grown-up people are not strong enough to exult in monotony. But perhaps God is strong enough to exult in monotony. It is possible that God says every morning, "Do it again" to the sun; and every evening, "Do it again" to the moon. It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike; it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them. It may be that He has the eternal appetite of infancy; for we have sinned and grown old, and our Father is younger than we.”~G.K. Chesterton
"Grown old". I feel that. After five pregnancies and four babies, this season of motherhood I am in has me identifying with Bilbo Baggins, "I feel thin, stretched, like butter scraped over too much bread." In a quiet space in my heart, I know this season is also quickly changing. The baby sitting across from me in the sand is our last. I feel the guilt heavy on my chest that I shouldn't be wishing these sweet days to pass quickly, but I do not have the strength to rest in contentment. I continually squint toward the future, assuring myself it will be better once I get there.
"But perhaps God is strong enough to exult in monotony." And therein lies my hope. I am not strong enough to bear the burden of this daily monotony. I never will be. But I can place my weariness on the strong shoulders of Jesus.
One verse I cleave to continually is from Isaiah 41:13 " For I hold you by your right hand--I, the Lord your God. And I say to you, 'Don't be afraid. I am here to help you."(NLT)
The God of the universe who never tires of clothing the daises or causing the sun to rise, exults and delights in the monotony of me.