survivial of the camp-out

The fresh evening air wafting through the screened flap of the tent, and the sound of cars slowing driving past the house, pleasantly lulled the kids and I into slumber. This impromptu sleep-over in my parents tent (in their back-yard!), was one of those "lets make a memory" endeavors that I did FAR more for the kids, than for myself . To be honest the thought of sleeping between 2 cranky children who had spent the entire day bickering and complaining, didn't exactly appeal to me...in fact it made me quite nauseous. I could envision the whole scenario playing out in my head, the kids and I in an enclosed tent the size of a closet (every possible exposed space covered with toys), requests for late-night snacks, complaints and whining of strange smells, hard surfaces and...loud breathing.... What am I a super-parent?? I need to see my contract, ask for a raise before committing to something this crazy!

But at 10:30 p.m (which felt more like 4 am), after the babes were asleep and my own eyes started drooping; all the fighting, melt-downs, and public humiliation of the day, seemed light -years away. Even the little knee carved into my back didn't (quite) seem as bothersome. What was it about the great out-doors that stirred and softened my heart? What was it about the sound of my children's slumber that made me so easily forgive, and overlook the blatant fits of disobedience from the day past?

As a parent, I WANT to forgive, and give that second chance. I want to move past the "teachable moments" and just have "moments" together! Plus having inhaled half the bottle of "off" mosquito repellent-(THANKS to someone deciding they were old enough to spray themselves, and half the town of winkler), I was just ready to move past the ugliness and get some sleep!

Thankfully, the peace and quiet that follows a troublesome, stressful day feels much sweeter, and far richer, than a dozen uneventful, quiet, obedient days (no i am not deluded....anymore). Stillness proceeding turbulence is powerful and so very enriching.

please note: I wouldn't ASK (or recommend) for every long day to end in a camp-out, just for the sake of experiencing the "sweetness"....but its certainly a wonderful gift when you need it most.

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