Gush Hashanah – Gushing with Gratitude

I don’t know what it is about today.

The continuous wind and rain while safely tucked away at home (ours and a friend’s).

Keeping Micah home from school (his school does not close for the Jewish holidays).

The holiday feel in the air as many other schools have off for a four-day weekend and the temps slowly dropping.

I AM GUSHING WITH GRATITUDE. Different from those days where I have to WILL myself to be more grateful.

Here are some items from my Gratitude Gush:

1. Keeping Micah home from school.

I need to do this more often. After all, he is not yet four and this is only pre-Kindergarden. Something about the storm hitting and having him home with us for one of his best buddy’s birthday celebrations was so toasty and well, just plain good.

In between Micah helping me make our breakfast smoothies, Skyping with my parents, and jumping around with little bro and their stuffed animals, Micah still in his superhero pjs and Ellis in his dinosaur footed pjs, I would grab Micah and make him fall into my lap so that I can BLESS him.

I read one of the best pieces on a parenting skill called BLESSING our children, written by a missionary from our church, teaching the youth in Cebu, Philippines, with his wife and two kids (and one belly baby).

Here is the post by Rick Harner.

I didn’t get to read the post as closely as I need to but the spirit of the post has stayed with me all week.

I really want to INTENTIONALLY bless our kids, at the very least, WEEKLY, by staring deep into their still-innocent eyes and encouraging them very specifically. God knows how valuable this is as criticisms and curses stick to us so much more easily, at least for me.

Words have power.

I hadn’t quite thought out this first blessing session today but because my boy was home, I gathered his thin preschooler body into my lap and grabbed his face with both of my hands. I just went into default blessing mode, which always means I become Aibileen Clark from “The Help”:

“You is kind. You is smart. You is important.”

Of course I wouldn’t straight copy. I customized it for Micah: “You is a good brother. You is compassionate. You is sensitive to others’ hurts. You is chak-heh.”

Yes, I gotta work on this blessing skill but how exciting that we can empower them with our words.

It was such a treat to have him home with us as the storm brewed outside.

2. Good lookin’ out, storm!

As of last night, the forecast declared that it would be 100% chance of rain, all day today, every hour, with rainfall of more than an inch. Our buddy ended up having to cancel his birthday party.

Today, despite the stronger downpour in the morning, we ended up being able to join Micah’s buddy’s “Plan B” celebration and the storm cooperated. Only light rain on the way there, then even lighter rain a few hours later when we were driving and strolling back. Even found parking right in front of her place on my first try!

Since it’s not driveway-to-driveway driving in these parts, I really appreciated the storm being gentle enough so that we could join our friends.

BEYOND grateful that we did not get drenched and rain-skurred for the next storm, though I know we won’t always be this lucky.

3. I love my girlfriends.

I love those moments when my chest puffs up with pride because I see my friend in action and I feel almost parental over them: “You see that gracious hostess who just keeps pouring out to her guests, she MY friend. She’s awesome, right? Yup, one of my close friends.” This is because I not only care about my girls but look up to them in SOME way.

4. I think this parenting thang does get easier in some ways.

I thought nothing of speed-changing these two wriggly worms so that we could rush out before the storm worsened. I packed everything up so fast and even threw our Strollerus Prime in the trunk as if it wasn’t no thang. It was the adrenalin from wanting to outrun the storm but it was one of these days I felt like, “Ah, no big deal. I can handle at least one mo’. You need me to lift a fridge or anything tonight?”

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