A Better Way

A Better Way

These last few weeks have been hard. They’ve been hormonally hard. So much has been going on in my life. When I feel called, I will share more details of things eventually, but right now what’s relevant is that I’ve been dealing with some hormone and female issues for about a year now. Having babies is definitely taxing on the body, but so is carrying around extra weight for years, dropping and gaining drastic amounts. I will sometime go into this deeper, too, but I wanted to preface this post with the background that I was just feeling funky for the last couple of weeks.

 

This morning I woke up with the alarm before anyone else in the house because I had to get my butt out the door in -6* temperatures for my physical therapy appointment. Everything in me did not want to get up. Along with feeling like funk, I also have been having problems getting to sleep at night at a reasonable time. My mind races with everything I should have done, could be doing, praying, and asking tons of questions. But I got up, tired, cold, waited for the Bunn to brew my coffee and headed out the door.

 

I walked into therapy grateful to have seen the sun for the ten-minute drive. I realized it said it was supposed to feel like -6 out but it felt warmer. Greg, my physical therapist, and I went over our normal routine and talking. He asked if I wanted to run today and I said yes. He gave me a circuit workout to do in his office. It was a nice change of pace for me. At physical therapy I tend to just end up running for thirty minutes or so after a warm up circuit. Or my workouts are high intensity at home in the garage. It was a nice change because I did not want to work out doing the same ol’ thing. It was also a nice change because there’s something about being a perfectionist and having to prove myself to myself when I feel funky doesn’t motivate me.

 

By the time I was done with three rounds of the circuits, I was drenched in sweat. I looked down at my watch and realized I had burnt just less than seven hundred calories in thirty minutes. That was empowering. Empowering because I lost myself, I lost the cares of the world for thirty minutes. The world goes on no matter my current funky or non-funky mental state.

 

When I drove home I felt better. I felt almost like dancing but still had a snarky attitude. There was still this weird divide in me—a piece I wanted to let go and be content and happy and this other piece that was holding onto the darkness. I knew there was a better way and I was fighting it.

 

Hold that thought for a moment.

 

 

For the last month or so Dustin and I have been asking Del about potty training. We’ve been talking about it heavily with him for a while. I don’t believe in forced potty training, at all, and I’m glad my beliefs align with world-renowned pediatric urologists. (I know when I know I’m right dang it. Listen to me.)

Del is a couple of months shy of three years old. He runs to hide to do his business. In fact, he took me on a tour to his bafroom. His bafroom is this little nook between our back porch door and where the built-in bookshelves meet. Two weeks ago he made himself another bafroom. This one he calls the elbator. It’s an empty medium-sized moving box with Dietrich’s name on it. The box sits in our dining room because that room has been our catch-all for things that yet need to be unboxed or a home found for items. So he has two bafrooms.

Del doesn’t what disturbed when he needs to go.

He understands if he’s peed or pooped.

It’s time for him to be potty trained.

 

But he keeps fighting it. He’s king of excuses. The more diapers I change the more I get frustrated. Last week he had the hot poops. He cried asking for cream. I reminded him he could sit on the potty and he wouldn’t have that pain on his butt. In those moments of applying cream the last few weeks, I got so frustrated because I know he knows there’s a better way.

 

But he keeps fighting it. He has excuses every time we ask, “Are you ready to potty train?” He always starts with, “Morrow, Mommy, morrow.” Or it is, “No, not yet. I still need my elevator bathroom.” Sometimes he’ll said, “Well I said I’d do it yeday.”

 

I decided to finally put Del in underwear.

 

Today I’d had enough of the excuses. His and mine.

 

When I walked in the door from physical therapy with my own internal battle going on I decided to take action. Del was eating breakfast and I was hungry so I made my own breakfast. He was still moving slow and not quite awake yet so I didn’t bother him. The older kids and I started school for the day and I noticed the little booger sitting next to me on the floor wrapped in a blanket doing an activity.

 

My gut screamed, “It’s now or never, Danielle.”

 

I got up and said, “Hey Buddy, let’s go potty. He held my hand as we walked to the bathroom. I yanked his PJ pants off quickly and ripped off that diaper and threw him on the toilet quickly so we didn’t get second thoughts. He told me he was going to sing his ABCs and then began singing E I E I O (Mental note, we need to work on the ABCs some more.)

 

That boy did his thing on the toilet. It was as if he knew exactly what to do. He was efficient. Washed his hands. I set the timer. (If you all don’t know, my dad is the expert potty trainer and passed his wisdom onto me. It worked for the oldest two and it’s going to work with Del. The key is to do it when THEY are ready… not you.) And I went back to the office to work on school work with the kids.

 

Isn’t this like us, though? There’s something we should be doing (or not doing) and yet we choose the comfort of the same ol’ thing over and over again… even if that thing is harmful to us.

 

We know there’s a better way and we choose:

 

Food—I know I’ve eaten enough today, but that brownie sure looks good, too.

 

Alcohol/Wine—I’ve mommed so hard today, I deserve some wine to unwind.

 

Codependency—If I can just fix him/her/them, everything would be okay.

 

Drugs—If I can just get another hit, I’ll be able focus and do what’s right afterward.

 

Sex/Porn—If I can just be taken care of, I’ll get my mind right.

 

Shopping—If I can just buy something pretty, it’ll make me feel more empowered.

 

Mom’s Nights Out—I just need to get away and avoid this and I’ll come back more thankful. (Please note I don’t mean for mom’s nights out to be a bad thing. I enjoy them. They shouldn’t be an escape, though.)

 

Me time—If I could just freaking get some time alone to think, I’d be more rational. (Do not let me time misguide you into it being self-care. Me time is more selfish in nature.)

 

Selfishness—If I don’t do it for myself no one else will. That is until everything about me becomes me and no one wants to be around me.

 

Pride—I’m better than that, better than you, better than her. I don’t deserve… I’m right and you have to be wrong.

 

All of these things and more are just ways of avoiding the real problems we have. We know we need to do something (get through the funk, potty train depending on your age and needs ;)) and yet we choose to avoid the truth.

 

The truth is my son needs to potty train because he’s old enough, he’s ready, and he’s smart enough to do this. The truth is I need to put in the effort and let go of my time for a short duration to help him succeed. And. That. Is. Okay.

 

The truth is I need to sit in the funk and feel it. I need to experience the funk, explore why I feel that way, and then hand it over to Jesus. The truth is, I don’t want to feel bad things. No one does. But I’ll do every damn thing to avoid it until I’m forced to face it. And feeling like this is okay, too.

 

Is there any where in your life you know you’re choosing avoidance over choosing what you know is better? How do you fight the funk? Are you in a seasonal funk right now? Do you need potty trained, too?

 

 

 

 

 

 

photo credit: bratispixl Day or Night via photopin (license)

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hey, i’m Danielle

I love Jesus. I love my family. And I get joy from having a front row view of people growing toward their goals because of what I’ve taught.

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