Mother's Mid-Summer Prayer
By Debbie Farmer
the strength to last until Back to School Night.
Give me the energy to drive the swim team carpool, take knots out of wet shoelaces with my teeth and untangle the dog from the sprinkler hose.
Grant me the wisdom to remember the name of the redheaded kid from down the street who hasn't left our house since July.
Walk with me through the backyard over piles of wet bathing suits and empty ice cream cups, to rescue my good lipstick from the bottom of the wading pool.
Give me the courage to accept that everything in the refrigerator either has a bite out of it, had a finger stuck in it or is reproducing in the vegetable crisper underneath the expensive cheese.
Guide me down the hallway to the laundry room, where I can experience five minutes of peace and quiet by turning the lights out and climbing on the dryer so the kids can't see my feet underneath the door.
Help me accept that fact that even if I take the kids to the circus, install a pool in the backyard, go on a safari, and carve a redwood tree into a canoe and sail down the Congo, my children will end each day with "I'm bored."
Grant me the serenity to smile when my husband insists on tossing the Hamburger Helper on the gas grill because "everything tastes better barbecued."
In your infinite wisdom, show me how to disconnect the video game console that hasn't been turned off since June 22.
Comfort me when I realize the color of my earth-tone carpet has changed into a mixture of melted blue Popsicle and the remains of somebody's purple slushie.
And if I ask too much, God, just give me the foresight to know that one day – not too many years from now – the barbecue, television and sprinkler hose will be off; the refrigerator, front door and garage will be closed, and I will wonder where my children – and the little redheaded boy with the glasses – went.