Broken Blessings

“A BIG, BIG Scarey Cloud! And wind was yellow, red, and po-poe, and it was waining,” Austin explained while gesticulating wildly with his little arms, his luminous eyes framed with dark lashes. I assumed he was telling me about his dream, so I listened curiously.

“Sounds like a bad storm,” I prodded. “Yup,” he confirmed and then quieted as he considered this new addition to his lexicon. Storm. It was a big storm. Later he explained the the yellow, red, and purple wind was actually a rainbow, and then it was a rainbow house, and then it was grandma’s house.

I have been asking my children regularly about their dreams. Wesley had a bad dream the night before last, but he couldn’t remember it. Austin had this dramatic dream about storm clouds and rainbows. The more I read from Jung, the more I realize how much my dreams are a part of me and how learning the language of my subconscious has taught me so much about myself. I hope that somehow amid the blizzard of school papers, extracurricular activities, video games, and report cards, that I can instill the values of mindfulness, meditation, and self-reflection.

As if to reinforce the Herculean task before me, Austin found my special blessings jar. I had kept it safely up on the high shelf until a couple of days ago, I thought I could sneak it down to the accent table in my room. He tossed it up on the bed, and together we read a few of the cards. I should have taken it away and put it on the high shelf, but I was feeling adventurous and decided to watch him remove the jewel handled jar lid and his eyes light up as he discovered a new treasure inside. He took the jar off the bed, toddled a few steps, tripped over a pillow, and the jar went down.

I didn’t scream or shout or make a scene. That’s for rookies. I have long since exhausted my ration of tears over broken objects…..maybe once I gave birth to boy number three. I just sadly picked up the pieces as I always do, to assess whether to repair or throw away my broken things.

“It broken,” Austin stated factually.

“Yes, it’s broken. That’s so sad,” I said vaguely. “But I think Momma can fix it.”

I took the superglue off the dresser that I had just been using to repair the last thing Austin broke. “Good,” I thought, “It hasn’t dried in the nozzle yet.” I went to work gluing the pieces back together. It went quickly and before Austin had even begun climbing my leg to see what had my attention, I had the jar reassembled.

It was a pretty good repair. Perfectly imperfect!

As Austin and I gathered the cards to put in the jar, I read the blessings that had sat ignored on the high shelf for the past three years. Sometimes you need a little blessing, a little stormcloud blessing, to tear into your life and break your blessing jar and remind you to be grateful.

He’s at preschool today, and I don’t miss him yet. I know I will and by the time I go to pick him up, my heart will jump when our eyes meet and he runs to me to tell me, “I eat my LUNCH!!” I’m grateful for my crazy boy mom life of broken blessings and broken blessing jars. I’m so humbled to think that God has trusted me to nurture them to become the men that he created them to be. I know I will fail because I was never intended to succeed. That doesn’t mean it won’t be worth the effort. In God’s grand design, I will play my part, my broken part, and it will be enough. Blessed be His name!

The top card was made by Wesley when he was four or five. I also made one with his name.

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