Yesterday was one of those days where I kind of felt like a circus clown juggling one minute, teaching dogs to jump through hoops the next, and balancing far too many things at one time.
I had several conference calls scheduled for work, and while I love working from home, I love my child-free days working from home even more. Though I’m good at multitasking, my brain works best when I can give my full attention to one task. I do my best work when I can fully invest into something. So I spent my day juggling how long I knew I would need to spend with Alex to have his “tank be filled” so I could get through phone call #1, then knew we would need snacks before phone call #2. Somewhere around there lunch needed to happen before phone call #3 and more quality time with Alex or I knew I would be interrupted….
So anyway when I get in this funk, where I feel like I’m running around like a chicken with its head cut off, and I get depleted because I am so focused on my needs and my selfishness that I forget that God gave me these little people in my life to love on and serve…..well often times then I tend to point my frustration towards my kids. Questions like:
Why are they getting in the way of what I want to accomplish?
I can’t wait until they are older so they aren’t hanging all over me all the time.
Get your own snacks…better yet…why are you hungry AGAIN? I just fed you 10 minutes ago…… all of these cross my mind.
My kids become a burden in those moments, and sometimes I take the moment too far and it’s wasted, but if I listen closely here is about when the Holy Spirit steps in and nudges me to remember what role he has asked of me right now for them- to be their mother.
Now don’t get me wrong here…there is a difference between serving our children, and worshipping the ground they walk on. There is necessary self-care, and there is definitely selfishness in my sinful nature that makes me want to hold my own needs above anyone else more often than not, but this is another post for another day 🙂
I have heard countless times over the years “Cherish these moments! They grow up so fast!” And can I be honest- as a mom of littles I hear that and I cringe, and I want to kick the person who says it while at the same time hug them and sob “I know!”
I know it goes by so fast! I really do, but when you are in the thick of it….babies to toddlers to preschoolers from spit up to breastfeeding, to diaper blowouts, pureed covered babies, tantrums, and screaming 3-year-olds sitting in a cart walking through the grocery store….it feels so long, and lonely, and like you will never be out of it, and then in a blink, it’s gone….and all the sudden those babies are going to birthday parties without you, and asking about slumber parties, and doing chores responsibly without being told…how in the world are you supposed to handle it all any better?!?!
I just can’t.
Not on my own I can’t.
I do my best to cherish every moment, but to be honest, I lose it sometimes.
I blow it big time.
Like, a lot!
Then “sorry’s” are said, and heart to hearts happen, and wounds are mended, and we start over again, and you know what?
I am so grateful that we get to start over again.
Because you know why? I feel so much pressure from the words “Cherish these moments! They grow up so fast!”
Pressure to live perfectly.
To walk through life unscathed.
Pressure to not mess up or miss something, and I can’t live up to that.
I need grace to actually LIVE life.
So MUCH grace!
Not permission to do whatever I want, however I want, or whenever I want.
No I need grace to have permission to mess up. To not have to be perfect.
If it’s anything that I’ve learned from being a parent, it’s that I’m actually missing out on more of real life trying to be perfect all the time.
Real life is made up of “I’m sorrys,” burnt suppers, and kissed boo-boos.
Real life is made up of lessons learned the hard way, giving up control, forgiving others, and loving through our differences.
And so today….I muddled my way through trying to be the best parent I could be while balancing a bunch of work stuff. My heart wasn’t in parenting today, but it doesn’t have to be. Not when I have Jesus, He makes me enough. I lay it down before Him, and He helps me be what I need to be. I don’t always have to “feel like it.” Sometimes you just have to “do it” and watch “God work through and in you.
So right after I had my hissy fit woe is me, feel like a circus act moment today I snapped this picture of Alex, and right there, I was humbled….here is my 3-year-old old little man, looking like a 5-year-old. So proud. So tall. And God reminded me that yes, it is these moments I want to cherish, because soon, that 3-year-old boy, looking 5-year-old boy really will be 5, then 10, then 15, and soon enough a real man going off on his own, but I don’t have to find my “want to” in cherishing these hard moments in the early years, or in the teenage defiant years….I just have to let Jesus be my enough, and if Jesus is my enough, I don’t have to be perfect. He gives me grace. I’m given grace to make mistakes, and know that I am only enough because of Him….never without Him.
I don’t know about you, but I am so thankful for that. So I’m just going to keep on letting Jesus be my enough, because it’s so freeing that I don’t have to live up to anyone’s expectations anymore. I don’t have to live with the guilt weighing on me that I didn’t cherish enough of the moments, or do enough, or be enough. I just need to live this one life for Him, because He is enough.