Today is brought to you by…

I haven’t written here in over a year.  This is not because I don’t think of a million things that I’d like to post about.  My mind is always on overdrive and going in a million different directions.  (If ritalin had been popular when I was in school, I would have been visiting the nurse before lunch every day for my dosage.)  It’s not because my life has been boring or lacking events to note.  It is simply because I AM TIRED!  And I’m tired of being tired!   My facebook status at this moment states “Today has been brought to you by the letter TIRED!”  Isn’t that ridiculous?  I’m tired of complaining about being tired too!

I’m 41 going on 70!  It’s 8:48 and I’m gettting a little nervous that I might not get in bed early enough to wake up by dark:30 with a smile on my face to greet 114 pre-teens with the appropriate morning niceness. Is that a word?  Niceness.  It is now.

What bothers me most is that I am missing out on so much of my life and I CAN NOT for the life of me figure out how to slow it down, take it all in, be present in the moments.  I can’t quite figure out how to live out all of the quotes that I’ve posted through the years that spoke to my heart.  At what point do you stop chasing and stop racing in the rat race and just say enough is enough.  I’m changing the course of this ship.

I wake up panicking because somebody’s uniform is in the washer and it needs to be dry before they leave.  It is nuts that my first thoughts are of something that I’m behind about…..because I slept!  I’m sure some of this forever long to do list is normal for most people.  I know that only the glamorous goes public on social media.  I’ve never seen anyone cleaning a toilet in a selfie or posing in front of a sinkful of dirty dishes.  I know that life is busy for most people.  I get that I’m not some crazy exception to the rule or super woman.

I’m just soul searching for some really intentional ways to slow mine down….for the sake of my self and my family.

I’m going to write about it until I figure it out.  Because that helps, right?   🙂

What doesn’t make it to Facebook

 Facebook, instagram, twitter, whatever it is.  It’s where we put the best. It is our face to the world, our portrayed lives, our facade if you will.  It is filled with smiling children and parents. They are enjoying gorgeous sunsets and eating gelato.   The children are wearing smocked dresses with matching bows and even their bloomers are monogrammed.  There are days when I can say “oh how cute” and mean it.  There are days, like today, when I look at those pictures and read those posts and I feel that it is a direct insult and that those mothers were sending those pictures directly to me just so I could see how I compare. Now obviously I know that is ridiculous but it does cross my mind. As I clean the litterbox and countertops, I can vision Paris, the beach, the pinterest perfect birthday party.  Oh thank you facebook.

     I read blogs in which people are feeding their family of 19 on like $45 a week.  Their produce is grown, handpicked, and organic.  Not only that…..they already put the extras in their pantry for winter.  They have their peaches in jars that have the word “peaches” nicely written on chalkboard vinyl……so as not to confuse them with the organic apricots, I am sure.  I’ve been doing a budget around here.  Yep.  I have figured out that my family can eat for about $5 an hour.  That’s right.  My peaches are eaten by the pounds around here.

     An article came up today that mentioned all of the things that you should start doing as a family on week nights.  I scrolled through it while having a totally separate conversation about why we couldn’t go outside in 95 degree weather.  I kept searching for the “eat, do homework, bathe, go to bed” entries but never found them.  Apparently, I need to do a game night once a week.  I should go for dessert with each child individually (obviously written by a parent with one child) once a week.  It would be nice if you would stop at the park on the way home from school with a prepared snack for a picnic.  WHAT?  Who, pray tell (quoting my mamaw here), is going to iron the clothes for the next day, cook the meal, clean the dishes, check the homework, bathe, wash hair, and do a load of laundry. 

     Seriously…….I look around and I just think I should call in a refill of an old prescripton for lexapro.  Because you see around here…..what had happened was……Most days I feel like we survive.  We just get it done.  There are a few exceptions but mostly we are just hanging in there somewhere between refereeing and comforting the littles, listening to the latest guitar piece, and trying to keep up with whereabouts of the other.  Our kids wear clean clothes.  They eat healthy-ish meals.  We (meaning Henry) reads to the kids.  They get a bath  They know we love them.  We do love them so much.  But most days……I finally sit down after they have gone to bed and I think how horribly, insanely, ginormously I messed up that day.  I said things in haste.  I didn’t say them because of fatigue.  I beat myself up daily because I’m just not doing it good enough.  Not good enough by the fake standards that I see all around me.  

      Today is a new day around here.  I’m working really hard to just be real.  I want to embrace our life.  It is so far from perfect but it is really good.  I have NOTHING to complain about.  I am so thankful for do-overs, for grace, for forgiveness.  I have to remember that I was given this life and that I am the best candidate for this position.

     I burned the chocolate chip cookies while writing this…..but they were home made!

Measure of Motherhood

It is a question that can keep me up at night.  It can rob me of inner peace.  It can cause me to measure myself against other mothers.  It can cause me to justify being judgmental against how others carry it out because we are doing it differently.  It can cause me to take the comments of others and create a block in my motherhood road map.  It can create doubt and fear that I’m making wrongs along the way that can’t be made right.  

What makes a good mother?  A good parent of any kind, for that matter.

Recently, in my Sunday school class, this was our lesson.  It was eyeopening to me to see that there are very few scriptures about HOW to raise children.  The way to raise children in the right way is to strive to keep yourself on the right path.  OUCH!  Now that takes a different perspective.  You mean I can’t just nag and discipline and coach and critique and praise and prompt and have them do what I believe they should??  In order to raise godly children, I’m supposed to examine my life and follow Christ’s example.  Yep, that’s it.  It makes perfect sense.  Children model everything we do.  That’s the hard part. The scary part. The part where I have to pray please make me what I should be and mold me into something better when I stumble and fail  Help me to seek forgiveness and give me lots of second chances….and third and fourth.

The freeing part of this is that it’s not all up to me.  I have been given an example of perfect love.  I’ve been given mercy and grace and I’m so thankful. I need it daily.  So the good news is that I have the most able and perfect helper in God above.  I’m also so blessed that I’ve been given an amazing husband to navigate this road with me.  Motherhood is probably the area in which I put most of my energy here on Earth.  I certainly want to succeed at it.  For today, I’ll work on myself.

So, the lesson that I learned was……give it to God.  Strive to live my life close to Christ.  I will be equipped and through Him, I will measure up.