Monday, August 19, 2013

Every mom at some time or another has done it . . .

I wager a guess every mom at some time or another has done it. 

When the girls were little I would flee to the bathroom, not to use the john, or sit on the naughty chair, but to hide out. Time-out for mom, I called it. Another word for that is “coward time." Hiding in the bathroom to escape the tyranny of childish ways. The whining. Fussing. Arguing. 

With door closed and locked, my charges would sit on the other side begging mom to come out while I ruminated on the throne. It wasn’t all bad, really. I had the place fixed up quite nicely. Linen hand towels. Sweet-smelling soaps and lotions. Candles. Miniature lamps. Home decorating magazines. Soft, thick toilet paper, just right for making out grocery lists. I was a queen in her castle. And for a few brief minutes of privacy I could breathe free, recharge, regroup, and reconsider how to deal with my children during those times when tempers flared and tongues wagged. 

When all grew quiet on the other side of the door I knew it was time to leave my refuge. Quiet could mean either trouble or bliss. Of course, I hoped for the latter which would reaffirm in my mind that my little exit to the bathroom had been sufficient to redirect the girls. More often than not, when I would crack the door and peek out, the girls would flood out of their rooms and surround me with sweet hugs. Mischievous imps in angels’ clothing. I knew this, but the hugs always threw me for a loop and I would succumb to their endearing ways. 

Hiding in the bathroom offered a respite for me and redirection for the girls. Time alone ushered me into the throne room of God where I could vent my frustration and seek God’s wisdom. I became the little child running to her Daddy, climbing up in His lap and throwing my arms around His neck. His face so full of love and patience in spite of my many childish fits and complaints. His arms so strong in spite of my weakness. His hands so gentle in spite of my folly. His smile so warm in spite of my coldness at times. And His heart so full for me. I leaned in to Him and heard His quiet song of love. I heard His words of comfort and direction. A Father talking to His daughter. In that moment, all was well. I could face my charges once again. The parent had been parented.

I always knew that room of the house was good for more than one thing.

 Eileen Rife, author of the Born for India trilogy, enjoys time with her three grown daughters. Her six grandchildren inspired the soon-release, Wit & Wisdom from the Wee Ones (OakTara).,,


chaplaindebbie said...

Hahaha.... not sure I remember ever hiding out in my bathroom. I was one of those lucky moms that only had to discipline her kids once in a while. When they did act up, I would simply give them a strike (3 strikes and they were grounded from something). Any 'fit throwing'(which was rare) caused the child to stand in the corner. No, no bathroom refuge for me...if I needed alone time, I sent them to their rooms for quiet time while I had the rest of the house....Today, seeing how out-of-control my grandkids can be sometimes amazes me.

Eileen Rife said...

Good advice, Debbie!

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