For the past few weeks, I’ve taken a break from blogging. I have 3 kids ya’ll. And a job with clients that pay me to train them. I have a husband I love spending time with but who manages a hectic work and travel schedule. Factor in sports and end of the year business and it makes for a busy Spring schedule. Not to mention the sweet friends God has placed in my life who I hardly get to see. It’s not a complaint, but it’s life with growing kids. So, when blogging becomes burdensome, I have the freedom to take it off my plate. As much as I love it, it’s not my top priority. I’m not aiming to be a famous fitness blogger or writer who nails the book deal. I love to write, LOVE it. But, there are just things in my life that are more important right now. That’s probably way more than you wanted to hear, but it’s life.
And this time of year is one of the worst. We have standardized testing and end of the season games, baseball tournaments, school functions, end of the year parties, graduations, work and household responsibilities and I feel like my mind is completely GONE. Forgetful and franticly trying to stay on top of all the things, which is not my forte. I’m a fly by the seat of my pants laid back type who struggles to hang on when things get busy. I don’t do busy well. I absolutely do not thrive on pressure. I go in the opposite direction. Like, hide in my house and avoid all responsibility type of direction. It’s awesome. Except it’s not.
But really, we can only do so much.
I feel as though the pressure we put on each other and ourselves to do all the things and be all the things is just too much ya’ll.
We have to have a strong online presence, work a full or part time job, make everything from scratch, wife well, mother well, clean and drive and grocery shop, volunteer at the kids school, take care of our figures, show all the patience, lunch with our people, grow and nurture lasting friendships, and keep a smile on our face and our blood pressure down in the process. And it’s hard.
Oh wait. It’s not hard.
We simply can not do all the things.
I knew these last few weeks leading up to the end of school I’d have to exercise the word no. I pictured a plate, broken up into sections with the things that are necessary and most important in my life. And I had to be able to look at that plate, and what took up it’s space, and know when it was full. My kids are getting older and busier. I spend the majority of my time with them. Driving them and cheering for them and feeding them and enjoying them(most of the time ha!). It’s the nature of mothering, especially as they grow. And apart from my relationship with Christ and my husband, they take up the biggest part of my plate.
I’ve been a mom for 11 years, and I’m still learning to be ok with this. I don’t have to “be” anything else. I don’t have to get up 3 hours before the sun to do all the things. Sometimes I do. But rest is ok too. Taking some things off our plates isn’t shameful, it’s wise. It gives room for other things that deserve more space. I used to feel like by not doing it all I was failing. And that’s a lie the enemy uses to steel your sense of worth and value. Hear me momma, being a mom and focussing on that is not shameful, it’s brave. Being a full time working momma isn’t shameful, it’s brave. Doing both work and mothering isn’t shameful, it’s brave. Being a teacher or an accountant or a wife or a coach isn’t shameful, it’s brave and it’s following your calling. You are teaching your kids(or future kids, or your spouse or yourself) that the sky is the limit. However, the sky doesn’t have to be the standard. It’s ok to stay a little closer to the ground too. Pick a few things and do them well. Have too many things and something suffer’s. We just can’t give the best of ourselves to everything. So, I’m learning(however slowly) to just choose a few things and do them well.
As we approach Summer and noise and kids home and all the swimming and chilling and juggling work with them around, and all the other things, let’s embrace our lives and choose joy. Let’s choose to rest when we can and embrace the crazy as well. Let’s be wise with our time and our choices, our commitments and our relationships. Let’s encourage each other, even if our lives look completely different. Let’s not judge or criticize.
Please, for the love, I’m over the judgement and the criticism, especially from or around the mom world. We don’t all do life the same. We mother differently and all have different home dynamics, different marriages, different jobs or responsibilities. We’re all different, because we can’t very well all be the same. That would be so insanely boring. So can we please embrace our differences? Embrace the mom who stinks at volunteering at the school but plans a killer birthday party for her kid. Embrace the mom who NEVER responds to texts or emails, but who loves to chat on the phone or meet over coffee. Embrace the mom who is more quiet or whose kid doesn’t play sports. We’re different. Our kids are different. But that doesn’t mean we can’t encourage each other and do this life thing together, or at least side by side without criticism and judgement. Shame is real, and it’s an emotion that has magnified itself since becoming a parent. Let’s not forget we are all prone to feeling shame for not being enough, not doing enough, not remembering enough. Whatever your trigger, it doesn’t take but a sideways glance from a critical mom to bring that shame to the surface. Let’s embrace what’s different and learn from each other. Let’s move through life together without waisting time and energy on criticizing, judging, or shaming each other.
Ok. Jumping off my soapbox.
Happy Wednesday my friends. And remember, grace it’s where it’s at.