25 May 2012

Five Minute Friday: Opportunity

Around here we write for five minutes flat on Fridays.

We write because we love words and the relief it is to just write them without worrying if they’re just right or not. So we take five minutes on Friday and write like we used to run when we were kids.

On Fridays we write with gusto, unselfconscious and flat out.

What can you write in five minutes flat? {—> click to tweet}.

1. Write for 5 minutes flat – no editing, no over thinking, no backtracking
2. Link back here and invite others to join in.
3. And then absolutely, no ifs, ands or buts about it, you need to visit the person who linked up before you & encourage them in their comments. Seriously. That is, like, the rule. And the fun. And the heart of this community.

OK, are you ready? Give me your best five minutes on:





They knock on the back door with those dirty faces – the cleanest part of them. Their clothes. I don’t even know what to say about their clothes. I strip off everything down to their tiny, tightie whities and escort them direct to the tub. I wish I could say I laughed. I wish I could say I celebrated their boyhood or the rain or the backyard wonderland of mud.

I saw the carpet. And the tracks upon tracks. Boys, dog, boys.

I’m the one who taught them how to dance in the rain.

I yelled and stormed and flung a pair of crocs out the back door.

The paw prints stained the world.

I heard myself and I turned the shower up higher.

I heard myself and I slammed a screen door closed.

I heard myself and I snapped right back, “But look at this place.” Micah cried in the shower.

The evening measured in inches. Slow inches. These boys are grown so tall. I am the mom and the boss and the dancer and the whiner. I shrank a bit that night.



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  1. 2

    Oh, I know those shrinking days. We too have muddy days and tracks worn dirty and thick through our lives. I’m with you. Hugs, you’re doing a good job, even in the shrinking, when we show our mess, He is made big.

  2. 3

    Oh these days. I have had too many of them. I wish I could forget all the times I’ve blown it. Thank God for his grace and mercy. Always praying it’s enough to cover my stains.
    Love you, Lisa-Jo.

  3. 4

    Summer especially … and all the dirt and extra laundry… Yes it gets to be so overwhelming sometimes. Beautiful, honest post — thankful for His grace tonite. xoxo.

  4. 5

    Beautiful post, Lisa-Jo…sounds much too familiar, & I imagine it will resonate with anyone who has ever loved a child!

    Take comfort in this, sweet mama…if you continue to give them your heart, I promise when they’re grown they will remember the dancing and not the tears in the shower.

  5. 6

    We have all had those days. Thank goodness for do-overs and new beginings every morning!


  6. 7

    Each moment is an opportunity, isn’t it? Some moments are better than others.

  7. 8
    r.elliott says:

    Lisa- jo…this is why so many love coming here…you don’t have pretense…you are honest and real and this encourages others to be the same. Oh oh…I have cried and repented more times than I can count. But when our kids see us repented…they are so quick to forgive…and unlike us…they do forget. I am still amazed how much more positive my adult children see me as their mom… all the times I fail got absorbed…covered by the times I did not fail them. Keep teaching them to dance…

  8. 9

    Oh I have known many a day as you describe. Shrinking days. So very apropos—and a reminder of God’s grace and the truth that love covers our bad days as well as our good ones.

  9. 10
    Lisa Milman says:

    I feel as if you’ve been looking in my windows, then writing my story! This post strikes home with me. Lots of mornings (and afternoons and evenings…) come with “do-overs” in our house. Whenever we need one we stop and say “Can we start over?”, then we do. Some day we’ll get it right. Every morning is a new opportunity for me to be the better person – I’m the Mom after all, I’ve got the control right? ;-). Every day is a new opportunity for me to make the better choice, hold my tongue, give us all more time to get to where we need to be. My goal – one full day without any whining, crying, tantrums, hard feelings (and that’s just me!).
    Keep on keepin’ on!

  10. 12

    Thank you for being real with us. I do this, too. While reading, I felt so real the same feeling I do every time, when I waste an opportunity and handle it all. wrong.

  11. 13

    Just a Q – so many seem to be linking up their regular posts and not playing along. Do you ever say anything to them … reminding them of the rules?
    Thanks and God Bless!

  12. 14

    Oh the carpet…how does it manage to yell louder than the voices of our children?

    Wouldn’t it be lovely to have a switch and be able to suddenly be an outsider during important moments in my life so that I could see the right perspective naturally instead of focusing on something extraneous?

    Good post, and so easy to relate to.

  13. 16

    Had one of those days myself a few weeks ago. SO hard to be the Mommy after I mess up. I would rather hang my head and let someone else take the wheel at that moment. But after no one else over the age of 25 volunteers for the job I take a deep breath and get back in there. This time on my knees.
    I love your blog and your mama heart. Thank you for sharing and for having the five minute Fridays – a favorite part of my week! Sunshine

  14. 17

    Ok I’m going to sound like a idiot but do we follow a certain theme each friday or just what our heart and fingers type for 5 minutes? I want to join next friday but wasn’t sure if there was a list of topics I had to follow?

    • 18

      The topic is posted here on Thursday night in Lisa-Jo’s post title. This week is opportunity, last week was perception. You’ll notice though, the topic doesn’t have to be taken in it’s most literal sense. I look forward to finding you next week!

  15. 19

    been there, done that and i even own that t-shirt!
    thank God for grace and mercy! and for children who recall more good than bad…more happy than sad…more dancing than tears!
    thanks for your authenticity!

  16. 20

    I will post a blog later, right now I just want to give you an internet Hug. So you shrank in your eyes. But You will always be bigger than life in theirs. And you have been given an opportunity to show how to laugh…and it isn’t easy sometimes, to laugh at life.

    One day we will meet, and I will tell you about the argument that caused my daughter to run down the street holding on to the car door, and how God showed us the humor…hours later.

    Love you!

  17. 21

    Oh Lisa-Jo – those days are decades behind me and still they make me shrink a bit when I remember them. However, there is His incredible grace and it fills in those places. My grown children don’t seem to remember those places where I failed so miserably (or they simply don’t hold them against me); they, and the Father, give so much grace.

  18. 22

    Oh how I hate it when Mean Mom rears her ugly head around my house. She’s not fun for anyone!

  19. 23

    Your post reminds me of my brother and I growing up. My mom would say get lost and get outside, but be back for dinner. She never did say what shape to come back in – ha! Have a Great Weekend!

  20. 24

    My heart just broke when I read this. I’ve been there. More than I care to admit. I lie awake at night re-living those missed opportunities, promising myself I’ll do it differently next time. You’re always so good at seeing the good. This was a different kind of post for you. It really touched me. Thank you.

  21. 25

    How comforting to know I’m not the only one who shrank this week and cringed at the sound of my own voice.

    Thank you for your authenticity. It is a gift that blesses my soul.

  22. 26

    oh, so like me… except that I have never learned to dance in the rain!

    and ps… I’m one of the guilty ones that adds my link and says, “I’ll come back later to comment” … and then forget!! Today, I did better! Might go back to last week’s and make up for it! :)

  23. 28

    I, too, have been there – more days than I care to admit.
    Today, however, I managed to relish the Muddy Opportunity. While I was not out in it with them, I took a certain joy in striping them down – to nothing – on the back patio and spraying them down with the hose before letting them step foot in the house. They had their fun and I didn’t have lament over the tracks. This has NOT been the case before, but today, at least this once, I was able to see the fun in the mud. <3

  24. 29

    Oh, LisaJo, boy have I ever had those days. Reading your words brought tears to my eyes and pain to my heart. It hurts so much, them and us when we have those moments. Those times give us a chance to show our children that even adults can do things the wrong way. It gives us a chance to model saying “I’m sorry.” It gives our beautiful children a chance to say, “You hurt me,” and to shower us, the offender, the grace of God.

  25. 30

    Oh how I know these snappy, slamming, storming, shrinking days. xoxo

  26. 31

    “I shrank a bit that night.” Oh boy have I felt like THAT! Thank you for being real. I won’t be so hard on myself the next time. That shower can work wonders can’t it?

  27. 32

    This was me yesterday.

  28. 33

    My little girl is only 10 months old, but I can certainly relate when it comes to my marriage. How many opportunities I’ve missed to be gracious, loving, kind, helpful in order to be selfish, whiney, burdensome. Thank God for His new mercies every morning.

  29. 34

    Oh Lisa Jo, I have tears in my eyes. This is me all too often. And it breaks me into a million pieces. God has more grace for me than I have for myself. Thank you for your honesty, as we all experience this from time to time.


  30. 35

    But they look so clean in the picture. :) I scream too – why can’t I stop when I hear myself?


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