The Stuff of Life

Good Words


“It was sorta okay.”

That may not sound like much of a sentence, but when you are a mother and you hear those four words exit the mouth of a child who has been struggling with multiple things on multiple levels, those are good words. Good words indeed…

My boys used to be babies. You, know, the kind that needed fed all the time and changed all the time. The kind that continually spit up on their clothes and my shoulder. The kind that couldn’t verbalize what they wanted so they cried, or screamed or rocked back and forth with a vengeance (probably only those of you who know Owen and Lewis will understand this one.)

That phase of life was physically exhausting. – And it kind of felt like I was living the movie Ground Hog Day sometimes. – Every day a slight variation of the same thing.- An unending cycle of the fatiguing madness of baby-dom.

But those boys are not babies anymore. And mothering them is no longer physically exhausting. They can feed themselves. They can go to the bathroom on their own and sometimes even remember to flush the toilet. They can read (2 out of 3 can anyway.) They can set the table, load the dishwasher, empty the garbage and one of them even mows the lawn.

Somewhere between the helpless baby stage and the responsible “big kid” stage, there has been a definite shift in the type of exhaustion this mother has experienced. Though my kids are much less physically demanding than they used to be, the motherly emotional exhaustion has amped up  (and I’m pretty sure I’m not alone. Right, moms?). There are things I need to just sit by and watch them go through. And all the while I just want to rush right into the middle of that stressor in their lives and get rid of it, or at the very least bandage their boo-boos. But I don’t. I sit back and watch and teeter-totter between worry and prayer, and sometimes I even cry a little bit…

…and then, one day, one of these boys who has been going through something pretty difficult comes through my front door and says of his day “It was sorta okay.” And that makes my heart happy. Not because that sentence means that life is peachy now but because those words tell me, “Hey, mom. I’m working through this. I don’t like it, but I’ve found at least one small good thing to cling to. And because of that, I’m ‘sorta okay.’”

Such a simple little statement. But so good to hear. Good words. Good words indeed.


Author: Kim Harms

I am the wife of a guitar-playing, worship-leading, adventure-loving husband. I am the mother of three incredible sons: two of whom recently surpassed me in height, and one of whom I am going to pretend is still my baby. I am saved by grace; a daughter of the King who was and is and is to come. *** I am a regular contributor at Today’s Christian Woman, a monthly blogger at Inspire a Fire and have freelanced for a variety of publications including Chicken Soup for the Soul and Guideposts. *** The 500 Dresses ministry that I started with my mom in 2010 is our way of answering the call to serve those in poverty.

4 thoughts on “Good Words

  1. I love you a lot, Kim. You’re a really good mom. The part of me that is scared to be a mom someday is incredibly thankful and relieved to know that someone whose wife-ing and parenting I admire so thoroughly has felt these things even while being such an amazing woman and wife and mother. I’m just blessed to know you, and to be involved in your life, and especially to live in your basement… I feel like I’m getting in on something really special by being here. Even though I’m getting a pretty cool (and hot) roommate this next time around, I think I’ll probably cry a lot the first time I don’t get to see with Lewis when I get home from work.

  2. (All my emotional sentiments are being dampened by whatever happened to all my apostrophes up there…)

  3. I’m glad for those hopeful words, Kim. Living the process…

  4. Thanks Mara. I needed your words this morning, and I love you too. And your apostraphes reappeared 🙂

    Yes. Definitely living the process…some parts of the process are just harder than others.

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