When Your Mom Cleans Your Shoes

They say that life comes full circle at some point in your life, and I have an inkling that last night a mini circle was completed. It was 9 PM, the hazy orange rays of the setting sun were a blanket under the now grayish sky, and I was kneeling next to the bubble filled bath tub with Nehemiah splashing around. I was cleaning his itty bitty shoes and was searching my memory for the last time I cleaned my own shoes. Its been years. As proof, you can take a look at my chucks and you'll question if they're 10 or 15 years old. But in fact, I've dragged them across three different countries and various states for only 5 years. And I could write pages on end of the sights they have seen. Aaaaand I'm veering way off topic now; back to scrubbing little Nikes on a beige linoleum bathroom floor.

So, as I tried to remember the last time I cleaned my shoes, I recalled that it was my mom who last cleaned my shoes. I'm 25 years old and my mom still cleans my shoes. I could drive all 250 miles back to Chicago right now, waltz in to my moms house with my filthy shoes and she'd say, "Those shoes need to be cleaned". I would agree and say, "Yeah, I'll get to it one of these days". Then I'd take them off (because unlike my parentals I don't like to keep my shoes on indoors) and venture off in search of food. Then ever so quietly, my mom would head down to the dim basement and start scrubbing away, laces and all. Before I could finish my beans and Doritos (yum), my shoes would be sunbathing in the back yard. Then I'd be grateful to my mother for her kind gesture, but a little bit offended because, "I would've cleaned them, eventually", and at the same time, I'd satisfied because I knew she would clean them at some point. She'd then go on offering me everything else that was in the fridge and life would continue as normal. 

Nehemiah is only 1 year old, he can't wash his own shoes, and Brian usually throws shoes in the washing machine (a huge offense in the Carrera household), and though no one asked me to, I was ever so delighted to clean his shoes. I was diligent in scrubbing the soles and laces in a way that I wouldn't even clean my own shoes. Then, it hit me that is what motherhood is, and I believe that fatherhood is similar, if not the same. Being a parent is doing what no one asked you to do. It is doing the little things better than you would do them for yourself because you're doing it with love. There was nothing I'd rather be doing than scrubbing Nehemiah's shoes. That small joy resurfaces every day when you're a parent, and it's wonderful.

For you it may not be cleaning shoes that inspires you and makes your soul soar it maybe something different but whatever it may be embrace it and do it to the fullest. Thank the Lord that you can brush dried mud off tiny Nikes. Praise Him with motherhood. Praise Him with love in the little things.


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