Sunday was the first day of Advent. My boys don’t really care about the “anticipation” and the “waiting” for Jesus. They care about the wreath on the dining table that has candles on it. Candles can only mean one thing – the chance to fight about who gets to light the candles and who gets to blow them out. That’s what Advent is to them. Though they did learn last year that Mommy means what she says – keep fighting, keep arguing, keep driving me nuts, and that wreath disappears!!
So we sit down to a fine dinner of spaghetti and meatballs Sunday evening and light the first candle – the candle of Hope. I ask each one what they are hopeful for – and no, that particular Christmas gift does not count.
A couple hours later, during a typical wrestling match, Mr. Ornery apparently delivered a well-executed sweep kick that crashed the five-year-old to the floor. I did not witness said move as I was in the kitchen, doing what all single moms do after a meal – hiding and praying for a moment of quiet. But no, the Little Guy is screams in pain, and his unempathetic mom gives him a kiss and an elbow rub and a “get over it” look and we’re ready for bed, guys! After all, it is bedtime and sleep heals all wounds.
And what I realize in that moment is that all I’m hoping for this Advent Season is a moment of peace….which is not to be.
So here’s this year’s list of Advent Hope.
- Hope for just a few evenings of quiet to sit on the couch and stare at the tree lights.
- Hope that the hurt elbow heals up by the morning. This Hope, however, was replaced with Monday evening at Express Care and Tuesday afternoon spent in the Emergency Room for a lovely HUGE cast! (Mind you, on the same day, Super Tall Guy finished his 3rd week of boot-wearing after 3 weeks of casting. One out of a cast and one into a cast! Delightful.)
- Hope that this fracture train will end and the third boy keeps his bones intact! (He seems to hold the opposite hope, as these casts apparently to draw pretty cool attention according to his logic!)
- Hope that the dog will never ever ever again bark from her crate in the morning and wake me up on my golden morning of sleeping in as she did last Sunday! Really, dog?!?
- Hope that the boys will develop a much better aim for bodily fluids because I’m getting pretty tired of being the janitor (or else their hands are going to be cramping with writing assignments! “It’s 50 this time but it’s going to be 200 next time!”)
- Hope that we get a few more nice evenings to enjoy my early Christmas gift of a fire pit on the front patio (and again, not struggle with “behaviors” related to messing with fire!).
- Hope that there will be more dull moments this season – when the to-do list isn’t rumbling around in the back of my skull and the hype isn’t stirring up the boys’ inability to control impulses – and that we actually enjoy the days and each other (I know, too much to hope for, but I’m going to try).
- Hope that I can instill some meaningful traditions into this season where the boys catch a glimpse of the true meaning of Christmas and think about others for a few seconds; I’m only asking for a couple seconds.
- Hope for the world and all its people to find some peace and know that Christ is the Light of the world that disperses darkness.
- Hope for continued love and support of family and friends, and for patience….lots of patience….I need lots of patience…..
I’m wishing for you your few moments to sit quietly and enjoy the tree lights. If you even get that, you’ll be lucky! Maybe you need to wake at 3AM for it to happen. But we all need a quiet time in the busyness of this season to breathe deep and feel His peace. May you have a blessed Christmas season.