Dude. Can I say dude?
I had a hard mom day today (Written a few weeks ago). It seemed every time I turned around the kids were doing something they know they shouldn’t. Or one had an attitude and tried me with it by putting the forbidden Cheetos in the mouth and starting to chew with a sass on the face in front of me.
As if I didn’t even speak out of my mouth.
As if I didn’t have authority.
As if I didn’t have set standards with them.
As if I didn’t even exist.
And that’s just the beginning.
One child cannot keep his mouth shut. Like I swear he talks to hear his own voice. I don’t know. Apples. Trees.
Another child is learning what sass is and doesn’t think rules apply.
There’s another child under my roof that is demanding and wants confrontation. Always.
I sat down to have some quiet. They followed. Even brought freaking chairs from the basement into the den next to me trying to put on a movie theater. They popped popcorn in the microwave. Sat up little tables and whatnot. Then instead of watching a movie (no electronics during the day and no TV on the main living floor), they started to read. Great plan! Until I heard this glug-glug-glug and realized one child knocked the humidifier over and the water was spilling all over my carpet. Thank goodness for scotch guard on the flooring.
We got that spill cleaned up and in twirls another child who decided it was appropriate to twirl with Fanta in her hands. ALL OVER MY FLOOR. The same floor the other child dumped water on. It’s white. The carpet is white.
The little jerks were so rude at the doctor’s office yesterday.
Loud. Out of control. Arguing over markers, that I thought were colored pencils. They refused to be quiet and respectful, distracting me, when the doctor was in the room.
I wish I could tell you I responded like Mrs. Duggar in her I-mean-business soft, quiet tone of voice. I hope her kids understand that is a freaking gift.
Nah, Mrs. Dugger wasn’t channeled into me today. I growled like an angry mother bear. I snarled. The snarl stayed on my face apparently because the husband came home asking if I’d made an appointment for Botox yet.
That was my stress today.
That was my stress.
That was my
That was a stress I prayed for for years.
A stress that is a miracle in itself because I couldn’t conceive this stress on my own.
That was my stress, that I am so freaking grateful for.
That was my stress I’d never change or ask for differently.
You know, my morning didn’t start stressful. I sat my alarm for my 8am meeting with God. I read. I prayed. I studied for a test I have coming up. My morning was slow and productive. So. Good.
Then the kids started to wake up one-by-one coming down the stairs. They had breakfast and then we went outside. I worked on mulching the landscaping. The kids played. I had them get their school work to work on. We did that. We did lunch. I did some outlining of Hosea 2. I studied some more. I made dinner.
Today was a good day. It really was. But the stress of the imperfections in my little people arose and took me over the edge.
I felt funky.
Like I couldn’t shake whatever was going on inside me. I felt off my game. I felt overwhelmed. I have a lot going on at this very moment in my life. For a year I’ve not taken on anything extra and now that I’m starting a business my life is a nonstop hustle. I needed a break from all the imperfections.
What I needed was to stop and see what was the source of my funkiness. I needed to look at my children in the eye and ask what the hell they were thinking. In a nicer way, of course. I needed to get to the root cause of their behaviors instead of just snarling due to the actions that they chose.
I need to embrace the season of life I’m in currently and understand it is going to be busy. A lot of demands are on me. I’m giving myself permission to say no to anything that stands in the way from my goals in this season.
When seasons of our life change, we need to learn to let go of some things in order to do the necessary work in this new season. I hadn’t taken a moment to realize what I needed to let go of right now for this season.
- I’m letting go of sleeping in on the week days. Since we moved to our new home, I’ve slept in usually anywhere from 9am to 10am every day. It’s been glorious. I love sleeping in. I love waking up with the kids because it’s like we all start our day together. We are on the same page and do things at the same times. We are in sync, maybe, is the verbiage I’m looking for. But during this season I need to get up before the kids. I cannot have my quiet time during the day right now.
- I’m letting go of other people’s burdens. This is part of a co-dependent thing, but also a Type 1 Enneagram thing. As a type one enneagram I see all the things wrong. I want to change the world. I want to take on the world and leave it in a better place than I came into it. It’s engrained in every cell of my body. But I can’t change the world alone. What I can do is encourage and support one person at a time. That’s my focus. Help those who are ready for help and leave everything and everyone else’s problems to them. This is overwhelming for me and distracts me if I let my mind wander too far from my job.
- I’m letting go of other people’s voices. I don’t mean I’m going to ignore everyone who says things to me. But I am going to ignore the voices that haven’t been given permission to speak life into me or to correct me. I will no longer allow the wrong voices to control or take away my voice or purpose.
- I’m letting go of disappointment. Disappointment for me has to do with my expectations and placing my hope in my expectations of people. I cannot expect people to be what I want them to be. What I can expect is for them to behave, do, think, and say who they are. A friend of mine and her husband say, “When people show you who they are, believe them.” That’s what I’m going to do. I will exchange my expectations for believing people for who they show me to be. And guess what? I’ll remember it isn’t my job to change them. It’s my job to be who I know I am and not waiver.
You see, the stress of my day really reminded me of this lesson—I am the only Jesus some people see. Guess what? You, too, if you’re a follower of Christ, you’re the only Jesus some people will ever see.
I heard that the other night. That statement hit me right between the eyes. My actions really do speak louder than words. My actions help reinforce what people believe Jesus to be. If I fly off the handle at my children, they are going to think their behaviors might set me off and I am not loving them unless they are always performing and doing what’s right.
I never want my kids to feel that they are my stress. I never want them to feel they aren’t seen and known. That’s why I apologized to my children, individually, and specifically. I made sure they knew my reaction was wrong. I did not give an excuse. I then asked them, how they felt when I flew off the handle and what they’ve been dealing with that’s caused them to act like little jerks, affectionately, of course.
In these instances, my kids see me living the life I say I believe. I have integrity and come to them to let them know I screwed up. That my screwed up behavior is redeemable, and so is theirs. We are not alone. I am not better than them. They are not better than me. We are learning this life thing together.
The stress I had today? Yeah that stress is practice for living the life I say I believe.