The Rumley Family

Loving Jesus, Loving Life

Being a Great Mom…

I was really encouraged the first time I read Being a Great Mom, Raising Great Kids by Sharon Jaynes. That was a while ago (2-3 years?), and I picked it up tonight to read again.

This poem was near the beginning, and it made me want to weep…

My hands were busy through the day.
I didn’t have much time to play
The little games you asked me to,
I didn’t have much time for you.

I’d wash your clothes,
I’d sew and cook,
But when you’d bring your picture book,
And asked me please to share your fun,
I’d say, “A little later, son.”

I’d tuck you in all safe at night
And hear your prayers, turn out the light,
Then tiptoe softly to the door…
I wish I’d stayed a minute more.

For life is short, the years rush past.
A little boy grows up so fast.
No longer is he at your side,
His precious secrets to confide.

The picture books are put away.
There are no longer games to play.
No good-night kisses, no prayers to hear.
That all belongs to yesteryear.

My hands, once busy, now are still.
The days are long and hard to fill.
I wish I could go back and do
The little things you asked me to.

from
Being a Great Mom, Raising Great Kids by Sharon Jaynes (pg. 27)

Look back at my last post and see how much time I spent playing with my beautiful children. I’ll save you the time – it was right around 0.00 minutes.

When it comes to spending too much time doing dishes and laundry and not enough time playing with the kids, I am the worst offender. The thing is, I don’t even like doing dishes and laundry. But they have to be done at some time or another, and it seems to be my job to do them.

So, how do I juggle it all?

I want to have a clean house and clean clothes to wear and yummy food to serve my family. But most of all I want to have children who know beyond a shadow of a doubt that their mommy loves them and loves spending time with them. I don’t want them to grow up and remember me as the housekeeper. I want them to grow up and remember me giving my energies to them.

And I fear I’m failing miserably.

If nothing else, this poem is a grand reminder to me. Maybe tomorrow I’ll remember to put down the dishrag and wrestle around with Caleb, make Ava giggle, read a book with Gracie, and crawl around with Jaden.

I just don’t want to miss it.

7 Comments

  1. My dad always told my mom: “Take care of the kids, the house can wait.” When your children are young, your days revolve around them. When they are older, the kids can get involved in the work as well as the play. That is the stage we are in now. Working along with Mom or Dad is a HUGE blessing to the children and to you. You are doing an amazing job! The kids need to see you working as well as playing. You are doing both, you just don’t realize it. The kids are turning out GREAT! Love you and your family!

  2. I agre with mom. You are spending time playing with your kids without realizing it. I know that my mom doesn’t like to play “childish, pretend games”, but I know that my mom would lay down her life for me. I know she would expend all engery she has for (she’s proven it these last 3 months!). Your children will never believe (although they may tell you for a short time) that you don’t love them and haven’t spent time with them.

  3. Aw, Lace. Pretty sure you’re doing a great job. Thanks for sharing your heart, though.

  4. I’m sure you are doing a fantastic job! But, I understand your dilema. I was in tears yesterday b/c the house was a disaster, and I felt that I had ignored both kids, except for the times I fed Olivia. I know you will find the balance between being a housewife and playing with your four beautiful children. By the way, I enjoyed the post about your day…made my head spin….but all the kiddos looked happy!

  5. That poem is a great reminder – for all moms!!

  6. First of all, I’m sure your kids absolutely know that you love them — your day made me tired, just reading about it!:)
    My grandma gave my dad a framed copy of that poem when I was a kid; it made me so sad to think that she felt she needed to tell him that so many years later, but she was a working, very young mom (she had him when she was 19) and had 4 kids after him in quick succession, so he was almost like a second parent to his siblings. Anyway, I still remember that, even though I was a kid.
    I definitely go the opposite way from “My house must be clean!” and therefore definitely do not have a neat, tidy house. If Brooklyn wants to play when I’m doing dishes, I turn off the water and play; now that she’s a little older I am realizing that I do need to teach her patience though:) So I will sometimes say “Mommy needs to wash 2 more plates, and then we’ll play.”
    We are all doing the best we can with the personalities we have:) But my personal parenting philosophy is absolutely summed up in this poem, since I always say “She’s only going to be this little one time!”

    Song for a 5th Child by Ruth Hamilton.

    “Mother, oh Mother, come shake out your cloth, Empty the dustpan, poison the moth,
    Hang out the washing and butter the bread,
    Sew on a button and make up a bed.
    Where is the mother whose house is so shocking?
    She’s up in the nursery, blissfully rocking.
    Oh, I’ve grown shiftless as Little Boy Blue
    (Lullaby, rockaby, lullaby loo).
    Dishes are waiting and bills are past due
    (Pat-a-cake, darling, and peek, peekaboo).
    The shopping’s not done and there’s nothing for stew
    And out in the yard there’s a hullabaloo
    But I’m playing Kanga and this is my Roo.
    Look! Aren’t her eyes the most wonderful hue?
    (Lullaby, rockaby, lullaby loo).

    The cleaning and scrubbing will wait till tomorrow,
    For children grow up, as I’ve learned to my sorrow.
    So quiet down, cobwebs. Dust go to sleep.
    I’m rocking my baby and babies don’t keep.”

  7. I can’t say I understand this in the way you do, since we don’t have kids yet, but I understand feeling like everything else is so much more important than spending quality time with your family and feeling overwhelmed because the house is a mess on top of everything else. It’s confusing and conflicting to our hearts to let ‘things’ come before God and loved ones. It seems that you and Luke do a great job though. You have Bible and prayer time as much as you can with your kids, and you instill discipline in them by attempting to keep things organized. Imagine how much different your family would be if all you did was play with them? When the time came for your kids to be responsible in same way or another, they would be clueless! (i would know! I work with too many families who take little to no responsibility and it shows in the way their children can’t read a book at 3rd grade and NEVER do homework!) Sorry… venting. Anyway… you are doing great! And eventually your kids will be able to help you more and then you will all get to play longer!! That’s my thoughts on the matter… 🙂 As always, thanks for sharing! ~Love you!

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