Today I realized that my kids have never played in the rain. Well, at least not under my watch. (I am remembering a picture of my oldest playing in the rain at Yaya’s house, when he was little dude’s age.) That all changed today. It’s funny how important things seem sometimes. And it’s interesting how easy things can be, even when you are sure they will be difficult.
It all started when the clouds started to roll in around 4:30 this afternoon. It had been so hot all day, that we were so happy to have clouds! The kids were already in their swim suits, swimming in the kiddy pool off and on all afternoon. In the beginning I was a stickler about taking off their swim suits when they were done, cleaning them up, and putting their clothes back on. But it has been so hot, yet they still get chilly in the pool after awhile that I just got sick of putting on and off their clothes. So, if they put on their suits, they are in them till the end of the day when I can pry the littlest A off me, and clean them up (in a tub of cold water, to boot).
Down came the rain around six o’clock. Little Princess turned to me and said a bit shyly, “Can we play in the rain?” For a moment the old Katie wanted to respond with a, “No, let’s not get dirty and wet before dinner.” But as I looked at my daughter, in her dirty swim suit, and a look of utter joy, wonderment and excitement, the new Katie took over. “SURE!” So, for an hour and a half my three older kids ran around in the yard in the rain.
Some of you may be appalled at this. How can I have an 8 year old who I have never let play in the rain? You might be even more shocked to learn that none of them own rain jackets or mud boots. (In my defense, I was considering buying them for them this year on their birthdays, and then forgot.) What I am learning, the hard way, is that Motherhood is a journey. I started to think back to things that I have done that I might not be super proud of, like the time I gave my 2 year old (my first born) a cold shower because he wouldn’t stop pooping his pants, and then every time after that, for months he would say, “Please, not a cold shower?” every time he got into the bath after that. And I started to feel guilty. And then, I remembered, the blessed peace I have in Christ. To be able to walk forward, casting off all the mistakes of the past, and embrace hope, truth and love, is an amazing thing.
Sure, this is the first time that my kids have played in the rain….but it won’t be their last.