Many, many years ago, when our son was a toddler, and our daughter an infant, I remember the underlying theme of my life was exhaustion. Nap time was a gift, and making it through piles of laundry and multiple diaper changes was the order of the day. Managing play dates and grocery shopping kept me on the go, and spending an hour at the gym was a refuge and a luxury.
Back then, my dream for the day was simply to make it to bedtime without any unexpected visits to the doctor, and with plenty of hugs to go around. Most days, my dream came true.
I remember waking up one morning in a fog. I am not a morning person. No matter what, if it’s before 8 AM, I wake up in a fog. Back then, when my children were young, morning called at about 6:00 AM. Every day. No exceptions. On this particular morning, as I lay on my stomach, running through my mental to-do list for the day, I remember turning my head so that it was my right cheek resting on the mattress instead of my left. As my eyes adjusted to the early morning light, my gaze took in the objects on my dresser — mostly folded laundry that needed to be put away. A few books and magazines and…a potato.
Yes. A potato.
I remember it like it was yesterday. In the bed, I shifted so that my right shoulder was beneath me, and I raised up on my right elbow to make sure I wasn’t seeing things. I wasn’t seeing things. There was a potato on my dresser.
To this day, I can’t tell you how it got there. It could have been my son. But it also could have been me, in a toddler-raising haze, walking around the house with a potato in my hand, intending to cook it for dinner and then dropping off a pile of folded clothes in the bedroom, and setting the uncooked potato down too. Who knows?
Later that day, I told my husband, “You know, there’s a potato on my dresser…”
“Really?” he said. “Sounds like the title of a book.”
We still laugh about that potato. It’s become an icon of sorts for a period in our lives where dreaming big took too much energy and making it to bedtime was the biggest dream I could manage.
Making it to bedtime was a beautiful dream come true, with bath time and tiny bodies snuggled in little pjs, and one or two bedtime stories read while propped up on pillows with curly heads of hair resting on my shoulder, and giggles and kisses and hugs all around. “Now I lay me down to sleep…”
Different seasons. Different dreams. All of them beautiful, God-sized, incredible dreams.
In what season of life do you find yourself? Do you think your dreams are small potatoes?