Living, parenting, Perspective

Heaven or Hell


This is heavenly.


That was the thought and feeling that flooded through every part of my body as I sat under a grove of trees a few miles from the shoreline yesterday.


I was with two women I didn’t know particularly well, my children playing with five other children, only two of which they knew particularly well – but so go play dates when you join a new group, I suppose. At least I could relish the gorgeous weather and spot for what it was. A quintessential coastal breeze in the shade of old growth trees. An hour of my three children not waylaying each other and my own ear drums and patience.


How odd, then, that conversing with these two women, watching our children twirl and loop around us, that I made the decision to love my life.


I’d asked them the ages of their children, which led to a clarification of grade levels just completed, and then, a conversation debating the merits of forcing kindergarten for children with birthdays on the cusp of the cut-off and/or waiting an additional year. I’ve had this conversation countless times the last few years, starting with other people’s children all the way to my own four year-old. It’s never cut and dry and the anguish is always apparent on the parent’s face – that they might somehow harm their child’s entire educational career for the sake of a start nine months too early or late.


But that’s not what this post is about.


I’ve come to terms with our family’s decision to keep our precious little pea home another year for the sake of six lousy days.


It’s the nature of that additional year that this conversation affected. The nature of life now.


There will come a day when I have to work outside the home. When I won’t be able to see my babies at 10 AM just because. When I won’t be able to sit at a park with virtual strangers/possible friends and discuss issues for the age and stage we’re all at.


There will always be dishes and laundry. There will always be exhaustion. There will always be the guilt of the unwritten chapter lurking somewhere behind the keyboard. It will always take more energy and effort to pack the kid(s) and all their crap up and go on an outing than it will to stay home.


But there won’t be the brush of feathery grass on the backs of my thighs. The rustle of wind through green leaves. Legs long and lithe, short and compact, darting and weaving. The call and answer of hide and seek. The heavy weight of a tired child solid against my side.


We travel through this world from start to finish regardless. It is totally within our determination to make it heaven or hell.




image from



5 thoughts on “Heaven or Hell

  1. Author Catherine Townsend-Lyon says:

    Well it has been awhile since my last visit Jennifer, My Bad! I just started a new blog & Book Promotion venture, and it’s going Nuts! Like Me!…LOL. Another good post! And thanks for stopping by my blog too!

    HAPPY 4TH!!
    Catherine 🙂


      • Author Catherine Townsend-Lyon says:

        LOL….DON’T I WISH!…LOL. But I have 5 new clients last week! Not 2 shabby 🙂 Cat


  2. I like to view it as Heaven since my glass is always half full. Enjoy your “full-time” with your kids while you can. I would love to see mine at 10am on any day which just isn’t possible every day.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s