Summer is officially in full swing. If you take one step into my house, it screams summer is here. Crumbs are everywhere. Laundry is strewn all over my couch that I can’t seem to get folded. Wet bathing suites are on my floor. Popsicle wrappers on the counter. And it’s hot.
My car read 97 on our way to Jake’s baseball game last night. It was 92 by 10am. This week we’ve had baseball games, parties and dentist appointments. We leave Friday for vacation so I have that in the back of my mind and have done NOTHING to prepare. Oh and did I mention I have a marathon to train for and a job I’m starting the week we get back from vacation? Yea.
All of these things seemed so manageable when the kids were in school and Lila and I had our nice cushy quiet Mickey Mouse filled days. Now? Now these kids are all up in my business all the time. I can’t pee alone. I can’t run errands alone. I can’t go to my room to get a nail file alone. I can’t fold laundry alone. They are like all of a sudden ALWAYS here.
At the end of the school year summer always sounds so good and glamorous and togethery(it’s a word). We’ll bond over grilling out and swimming til all hours of the night(or until we promptly put them in bed at 8pm because we are EXHAUSTED). It sounds so fun because honestly, it is fun. I love Summer. I love the ease of it. Not HAVING to have everyone in bed early. No tests or responsibilities for the kids. LOTS of swimming. My kids are all fish so we live at the pool.
However, every Summer I forget about the sorta ugly adjustment period. That period of time when you realize that this is your reality for the next 3 months. And I have those moments where I come completely unglued as I retrain myself to have constant company. Constant noise and action in the house after 9 months of quiet days and somewhat controlled chaos after 3pm.
I love my kids. I LOVE having them home. I am absolutely crazy blessed to stay home with them, I get that. This isn’t a complaint about that. I love spending time with them and wouldn’t send them back to school tomorrow for all the money in the world, but am I the only mom that takes a week or two to readjust?
I have found my temper short and my nerves frayed and its only been 5 stinking days. 5 days!!! What is wrong with me? For the most part this week, it’s been me and not them. They have actually been awesome and bless them, trying so hard not to step on those rapidly fraying nerves. So what’s my deal?
I think I want everything in perfect order. I’m used to having a straight house and time for quiet and time to be productive. I need to accept that I have to be organized for all of us during the summer. I need to get their butts off the couch and put them to work. I need to put my stuff aside at times to spend quality time with them. I want them to be kids.
I need to CHILL THE HECK OUT about having the house clean.
Did you hear me? Chill out. The house will get clean. They will only be around for a short time. Before I know it they’ll be off doing their own things during the summer. They’ll be driving and dating and going on trips or to camps that don’t include little soccer cleats or kiddy in the title. Right now, they want to hang with me. Even though I haven’t been the most fun to be around this week. That’s how kids are. They forgive. They love us even when we are completely unloveable.
Because one day they’ll be gone and maybe my house will be spotless, but I’m sure the quiet will be deafening. I need to be joyful. Not constantly thinking about what I want to do but can’t get done or what a bad mom I am for not making them make their beds or brush their teeth before we leave the house. Gross. I promise they brush and sometimes floss?? I’m only human ok. Sometimes we forget.
Bottom line……I need to chill.
I started reading Unglued by Lysa TerKeurst. I’ve actually read it before but it seemed appropriate with my intro to summer blues that I should read it again. It’s about not becoming a slave to your emotions. It’s a fantastic reminder that I’m coming unglued about little stupid things and I don’t have to. I can make a different choice. I’m not a slave to any of these feelings and I know for dang sure that Satan wants me to be. He wants me to come unglued at the drop of a hat, or favorite floop flop(as Lila calls it) coffee mug that shatter’s all over my bathroom floor(hello, happened yesterday).
But I know those are just feelings. They don’t own me and I know God’s desire for me as a mom is not to be one who unravels. Not that I can’t feel frustration or that during the long summer days I can’t put my kids in their place a time or two. I can feel a little stifled but it’s what I do with those feelings that matter’s.
So, I am reminding myself of what I know is true and what I know God’s desires for me as a mom are. To be patient. Kind. True. Trustworthy. Steadfast. Solid. Stern yet fair. Disciplined. Not lazy. Loving. Gentle. Teachable. Controlled. Peaceful. Joyful.
I know that all these emotions and disciplines of the heart can’t be mastered in my own flesh. They come from the power of God in me. Lysa T. says,
“Self-effort alone can’t tame the tongue and our raw emotions that run wild.”
My effort’s are in vain. I’m just too flat sinful to get all this. I need God in me to make this happen.
So, this summer, my goal is to make time for me. To make time for quiet in the morning before my kids wake up to be in God’s word, reading, resting, being quiet, enjoying a sunrise. To soak up truth to fill my mind so I have that to recall when my emotions begin to get the best of me.
Maybe you feel this way too. Maybe you are a mom with kids home for the summer which you know for a fact is a complete joy and blessing, but you are struggling to feel that. Maybe you work full-time and your kid are in day camps this summer and you are struggling to manage their schedules and your own. Maybe you don’t have kids. Maybe you are just flat struggling to feel joy and have become a slave to your emotions.
Can I just gently tell you that you don’t have to stay in that place. Make a choice. Change your attitude and re-adjust your mindset. The rest will fall into place.
“So set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God. And when Christ, who is your life, is revealed to the whole world, you will share in all his glory.”