This week the Five Minute Friday word is “Mess” and so the time has come for a couple hundred of us bloggers to join a free writing flash mob on Lisa-Jo Baker’s site to share our unedited thoughts on mess. Here we go…
Mess. My heart and mind immediately think of my Grandma and her words “blessed with a mess.” That was the way she looked at chaos when it came to little hands helping unload the dishwasher onto the floor, piles of laundry, and fingerprints on window panes.
The most wonderful perspective a mother of a toddler can hear from someone is one that includes
“it’s ok”. When my oldest was a little tyke I would rush to aid my Grandma emptying the dishwasher concerned that my little man’s tiny hands would only create a mess. Promptly my Grandma would encourage me to go sit down, she’d say “it’s ok” then remind me that she was in no hurry and that she was fortunate to have a dishwasher & blessed to have a grandson who wanted to help. If the little helper’s hands placed the clean dishes on the floor those dishes could easily go right back in that efficient invention that cleaned them the first time.
That view was also my Grandma’s perspective on laundry. She’d tell me she was thankful that she had been blessed with so many clothes to wear and “putting all those clothes through the wash is a good reminder that we have clothes, and God has blessed us”. Maybe it was because she was born in 1928 and she had been through times my mind couldn’t imagine, maybe it was because she raised six children and she knew all too well how fast they grow and move out taking their mess with them, or maybe it was because the truth is that any mess is temporary.
My very favorite line about a blessed mess is one that I heard many times from my Grandma. When I began to fuss over fingerprints on the windows, appliances or mirrors she would beg me to leave them. She’d say “please do not clean those fingerprints, they are what get me through the days when my little bud doesn’t come see me, those fingerprints remind me to count my blessings”. (Both her and my Granddad called my oldest their “little bud”.)
My youngest is now three. There are fingerprints all over the mirrors, the windows, and the dishwasher at our house. Some would see a mess when they look at those markings. I see a blessing. They remind me of how I longed for my second baby and how blessed my family is and they remind me of my Grandma, though she wasn’t around long enough to hold the tiny hands of this baby boy she no doubt watches over him from above and sees the absolute mess that he creates daily throughout his playroom and our home. Thanks be to God for children and for all those material things that create a mess. A beautiful mess. – T