Please Excuse the Mess

You know that sign that some people have in their homes that says, "Please excuse the mess, but we live here."? I have always loved that sign. Not only because I read it when I enter a home for the first time and breathe a little sigh of relief – "ah, you are just like me" – but also because I just like what it says. We are busy making memories, living a life, and it gets a little messy. Cleaning is boring, and also pointless when you have tiny humans who are particularly skilled in mess making.

I was thinking about this today, and wishing I had a similar sign that I could wear outside the house. "Please excuse my appearance, but I am living in this body." I know my hair is in the same braid I slept in last night and that I have no make up on. I am aware that yoga pants are more appropriate for people who have been to the gym more than once in the past six months.

I also know that it would only take an extra fifteen or so minutes to look more "put together" in the morning. But I am living in this body. And with those fifteen extra minutes, I can…

…sleep a little longer and hope that it translates into a little more patience and grace with my family.

…make sure that the kids look somewhat presentable (do as I say, not as I do).

…help T get to the next level on his video game.

…say "okay" when A asks me for a cuddle.

…pack snacks and lunches carefully rather than frantically, making sure they have their favorite things for school.

It is only fifteen minutes, but I hope that the little things that I do with them – the things that say "I love you" over and over and over – make a difference to them. Enough so they don't remember how I looked when I dropped them off in the morning because they are too busy remembering how I made them feel – loved.


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