The State of the Nest

Four pm and the house is chaotic.

A sick toddler has refused to nap, and two boys, plus an extra, run wild with the buzzing energy of a school day afternoon.

Laundry lies unfolded, draped over the arms of chairs and across tabletops.

The doorbell rings. The dogs escape. The upstairs toilet overflows.

I’m tempted to walk away and not look back. I want to peer into the windows of neighbors to compare the state of my nest.

I know what you’ll say. My house is the same. We all have bad days. Life with kids is messy, complicated, and loud.

But is it, really?

Even on typical days there are times I go to bed still spinning with stress: spelling words. Missing forms that should’ve been submitted yesterday. Grocery lists and birthday presents and pressure to keep up with it all.

Last night as we made our way upstairs for bed– ascending, as my father would say (as in, It seems that it’s time for me to ascend), my husband lamented aloud: It never ends.

He’s right. But somewhere in even the craziest days there are quiet moments with a book, a little girl on my lap.

A love note from a boy who has just learned to write his name (and in fact, those seven letters comprise the note in its entirety).

The philosophical musings of a third grader who’s processing what it means to dream and wake.

There are moments.

In them I can safely say that the state of my nest is just as it should be.


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  1. Lydia says:

    Beautiful. I know I say that about many of your pieces, but I love that you are able to examine the chaos and find the peace.

  2. Rachael says:

    And those are the moments that make it all worth it.
    Rachael recently posted..First CrushMy Profile

  3. January says:

    Yes, my house is in a constant state of something! It’s never boring and I wish there were more hours in the day just to reassemble my house most days. But you’re right…it is exactly how it should be.
    January recently posted..The Wisdom of a Four Year OldMy Profile

  4. Korinthia says:

    When it all gets crazy and loud at our house, I remind myself that one day it really will end. I have friends whose kids are grown and gone, and one day that will be us, and maybe we will look back on the chaos fondly.
    Korinthia recently posted..The Amazing Milwaukee Race!My Profile

  5. The way I see it…yes, things are just going perfectly in your neck of the woods. When things start to simmer down, that’s when you realize how blessed you are :)
    The Pepperrific Life recently posted..My Slinky-Dog Scare: The Near-Death Experience That Never WasMy Profile

  6. My house is a mess too. And so, at times, is my life. But I wouldn’t have it any other way.
    Natalie @MamaTrack recently posted..A Pink BabyMy Profile

  7. angela says:

    We are chaotic, too. The toddler is trying his hardest to give up his nap. But the moments of stillness and snuggles are worth it.
    angela recently posted..Small Surpises and Little KindnessesMy Profile

  8. Born27 says:

    Yes. So true. So be it!
    Born27 recently posted..Conference Call Price ComparisonMy Profile

  9. Maryden25 says:

    Well said. I wonder, why don’t you start publishing your book. I love what you write, I love what I read.
    Maryden25 recently posted..Big Cat Coffee Coupon CodeMy Profile

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