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Translating Chaos

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I drove home from a recent writers' conference refreshed and renewed.

girl in messy room

Michelle Kemper Brownlow: I pulled into the driveway, ran into the house, dropped my bag, and was awakened out of my dreamy, ethereal state by the reality I have grown to know and love. Chaos.

I was welcomed by my four adoring fans. I received a smile from my sweet husband, an ear-piercing squeal from my baby boy, a bone-crushing hug from my daughter, and a "Mom, I'm sta-a-a-a-a-rving!" from my eldest son. My creative muse went running and screaming out the back door.

Later, as I relaxed with my hubby, I thought about my red carpet entry and my mini-paparazzi. There were no flashbulbs, no autographs, and I wasn't dressed in Vera Wang. But that moment was chaotically precious. Their sweet anticipation was palpable. The smile said, "I missed your face." The squeal meant, "I'm happy you are home!" The hug was, "I have so much to tell you!" and the request for food told me, "Mom, I still need you!"

As a mom with 10 years, roughly 15,000 changed diapers, 2,000 loads of laundry, 520 weeks without a paycheck, three bouts of chicken pox, three broken bones (and a partridge in a pear tree) under her belt, I have learned the secret to translating the chaos -- and I am a happier mom for it. Believe it or not, our little ones don't live to give us gray hair and nervous ticks.

The secret: When the whining is breaking my brain, the fighting has my eyelids in knots, and there is so much stuff on my counters I have to dig to find dinner, I make myself remember a precious moment shared between the offender and myself and the chaos is instantly translated into "I love you, Mommy!"

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2 comments so far | Post a comment now
Katie January 17, 2010, 7:11 PM

I love how you turned chaos into a joyful memory!

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