I love bedbugs. I don’t love how they creep across my blanket at night or bite me and leave red marks on my ankles. I don’t love them for making my son itch or for camping out on my mattress during the day, waiting for me to come back to bed. I love them for the lessons they taught me.
I love bedbugs for making me take the entire family’s clothes out of our drawers and closets in preparation for the exterminator to come treat our home. Those creepy little creatures made me clear all the books off the shelves in our rooms and face all of my stuff as it sat in the playroom moved out of the way. I love that, because I had to move all of it, I could clearly see how much of it I didn’t need and how much time I spent organizing it all, when that time could be better spent with my kids.
I love bedbugs for kicking me out of my house for six hours after the exterminators came to do their work. I got to hang out with my kids at the park for a few hours, in no rush to hurry home. I loved sitting in the car with my boys, the baby napping in his car-seat, while we signed valentines and stuffed the envelopes for their classes. I didn’t have to rush them when they started telling funny stories about their day or when they took a break to read their library book in the middle of the project. I love that I had nowhere else to be and nothing else to do except be there with my boys, telling them how to spell “Your secret admirer” when they decided that would be a funny way to sign some of their cards.
I loved walking through the store with my boys without a long list or a ticking clock. We stood in the Lego aisle longer than usual, learning which Chima characters were friends and who used to be friends. I realized my boys know things I don’t, and they have a lot to teach me.
I loved eating out as a family, not because I was too busy to make dinner or because we were short on time, but because I still couldn’t be in my kitchen and we had all the time in the world to enjoy eating a meal out together.
I love bedbugs for making me get rid of my boys’ mattresses so they could sleep in sleeping bags on the floor for a night, having a “sleepover/camp-out” right in their bedroom.
I love bedbugs for filling me with love for my family in a way I never could have planned or foreseen.
QUESTION: What are some of the “bedbugs” in your life? (Inconveniences or problems that help you slow down and focus on your family?)
CHALLENGE: Take a few minutes to either mentally or literally step away from all the “things” in your life. Put yourself in a place where you can just focus on your children. How do you feel? How do they respond? Is this a place you could put yourself more often?
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