I've been under a bit of pressure lately. The kind that comes from spreading myself a little too thin. Like always, it's all good stuff. It's just that it all happened to convene in the same time frame and it's wearing me out.
Today though, one of those commitments came to an end. I've been directing Pecos Bill, the traditional third grade play at our school. It just so happens that Aiden is a third grader. This is good on many levels. It was my chance to make up for this and to be in a situation that allowed me the chance to praise my son and his classmates.
On my way to the school, I decided to take a moment to pray because, you know, when you work with third graders you never know what might happen. I had barely turned my thoughts to the Lord when I found myself fighting back the tears.
Let me take an aside here to explain that lately this is my M.O. I have made a concerted effort not to stress out about stuff and I have done really well. However, the fall-out of holding back all that stress is that at the most inopportune times, I spontaneously burst into tears. Take for instance how I made it through the entire Advent season without spazzing out or complaining too much about all that had to get done. Christmas morning however, as my entire family descended upon my house, I burst into tears because the egg casserole had leaked out all over the inside of my refrigerator. I made it through the entire preparation process for the rehearsal dinner (including having someone drop an entire crock-pot of the sauce the night before and having to remake the batch at midnight), and found myself fighting back the tears when someone asked me where something was in the kitchen. Consequently I wonder which is worse, stressing out or spontaneously combusting into tears.
Anyway, back to the story. As I cried in my car, I thought here I go again. I knew that I had the seven minute car ride to pull it together because the third graders would not know what to do with my tears.
But the tears this time were much more than a stress reliever, they were tears of gratitude. Tears that came from a moment of clarity realizing how much God loved me to give me this opportunity even though I wasn't looking for it (a theme for me lately). Tears of joy knowing just how much this meant to my third grader who told me after the production, "You're the mama who saved the play!" Tears of gratitude that I live in a place where I get the chance to do what I love.
This little play, with all its sacrifices and time, was a gift to me. Even better, those sweet little kids nailed it…twice. They were so good I almost cried again.