Do you hear it? Oh yes, let’s go back to the 90’s. To Monica. I hear her voice singing that song I loved…
“Just one of them days
That a girl goes through
When I’m angry inside
Don’t want to take it out on you
Just one of them days
Don’t take it personal
I just wanna be all alone
And you think I treat you wrong
Don’t take it personal
Baby baby baby baby, don’t take it personal”
Don’t you wish, you could say that to your kids? Haha! Like after you wake up from a day of the flu, and you feel better but still need a day to catch up. And then you get frustrated and yell, and it might be a little hormonal, too. Ever have one of them days? I have. Just today in fact. And let me tell you I deserved it. Yes, I will rattle off the reasons why in perfect fashion that I deserved to have one of them days:
1. I had the flu yesterday and due to technical difficulties after birthing babies and failure to do my “exercises” when I throw up, I also excrete bodily fluid elsewhere. No, I am not ashamed, but yes, I have become like my mother. Sigh. Hang head. Just kidding. My mom is awesome.
2. The day before yesterday, my daughter threw up several times, and I had to clean up her throw up.
3. I had difficulty sleeping comfortably due to my flu like symptoms, so when my 3 year old blessing came into my bed, I was anything but chipper.
4. Today, I woke and smelled something foul, only to find that it wasn’t remnants of the flu in my body, but the flu in my cat’s body. And it got stuck on his fur. After which, he proceeded to jump on my table, drag his bum across it, and leave swoops of his bodily excrement on my table, my bed spread, my laminate floor, my carpet upstairs.
5. I had to bathe said cat and scrub said carpets due to the previously described incidents.
6. This afternoon, my angel son…and I do mean that, soiled through his diaper and his clothes and his blanket and his sheet and his mattress pad. So after washing my comforter, I had to strip down his bed and change his sheets.
6. And finally, after all that I had to put my toddler to bed. Which sounds easy. But any of you with a toddler knows that’s a dicey game. It can go great. It can go horribly. I’ll leave the end of our game up to your imagination.
So, I think I have occasion to pat myself on the back for not killing anyone today. But as funny as it sounds, today I was thankful for poop and puke. Why? Because today, a woman I admire so much, lost her dad. Because today, a friend, lost their baby that they were carrying. Because a little over 3 years ago, Joel and I were trying desperately to have a baby. Because we forget that there are people out there who wish they had what we do. Because we get stuck in the mud of our day in and day out existence as moms and miss how important our jobs are, even when they feel overwhelming. Because love, the incredible kind, matters.
I know we all need a good rant now and then to get things off our chest (obviously). This is not about pressure to be perfect. We live in a body and we feel life. Thank God our perfection comes from Him. I know you experience pressure each day. I know you feel it. You ask yourself these questions. Over. And over. And over. Am I spending enough time with them? Am I giving them enough? Am I too lenient? Am I too harsh? Was dinner good? Is the house clean enough? Did I wear this same outfit for the last 3 days because only 2 is acceptable? Did the cat get fed (well, I didn’t ask myself that today!)? Did I spray the stain remover on Emme’s shirt? Is Judah warm enough? Should I have given him Tylenol before bed since he seems uncomfortable? Should I microwave our meals? Organic or not? Can they have one more cookie today?
This is a snapshot of my brain some days. Am I the only one? I don’t think so because I love my mommy hood, and we talk about these issues all the time. ( I am so pumped about using the term mommy hood when referring to my mom friends that now I think I should flash you a cool mom gang sign. And right now as I type I am trying to come up with a cool one with my hands…and failing miserably.) Anyway, but we think about all these things, and don’t get me wrong….they matter, but sometimes, they cause us to lose perspective. We lose the perspective that our job and those decisions we make day in and day out, the lunches we make, the beds we make, the laundry we do, the games we play, the cartoons we watch snuggled on the couch, the dinners we prepare with some organic and microwaved items, the teeth we brush, the diapers we change all add up to the lives we touch. We got lost in the day to day chores and we forget what they are all about. We forget that what we do matters. That God created us just for our kids, and He gave us the exact wisdom we need for them. I know we fail and we miss it, but that doesn’t mean He wasn’t directing or guiding, and that He is no longer willing to pick us up, dust off, and start fresh. Isn’t that what we do with our kids?
I am not challenging you to do more or take more on. I am just challenging you to make yourself a little more vulnerable to the leading of the Spirit. He’s good. And He is right there. Ever wonder why Jesus said it was beneficial for Him to leave? Ummm….no. Seems pretty silly if you ask me. Do I want Jesus, the embodiment of God, to leave the earth? My flesh says no, but my heart says yes. Because though my eyes could see Jesus, He’s only one person. And He was limited by His physical body. He could only be in one place at a time and only do so much, but the Spirit lives in us and guides us. He is the only one who can be everywhere at once, and I am thankful Jesus came so He could live in us, but I am thankful Jesus left, so I can invite the Spirit into my every moment, my every decision, my every thought.
And what I am learning is that is a glorious love affair where pressure ceases to exist. Where I no longer have to rely on my finite brain to have all the answers. I can trust His leading. I can pray and follow in the midst of my crazy, in the midst of my just one of them days. Do I have to check my questions sometimes at the door? Yes. Why? Because the person that frees is me. I have found in the glorious unfolding of the crazy sequence of my life events that God has been in every one. Pursuing me. Calling me to trust Him. Asking me to let Him carry the weight and allow the gospel to be the gospel. Persuading me to trust Him to give me wisdom for the moment. Allowing Him to bring me the community I need and the community that needs me. Lining up the events of my life into a beautiful masterpiece. And I know that seems vulnerable. It seems like chaos sometimes, when I don’t understand why. But somehow, every time, His way is always better than what I expected.
It’s one of my favorite verses. So I’ll end with this…after a blog post that has dramatically changed from the way I envisioned it. I believe it’s become what He wanted me to write it. So if you are having one of them days….and we all have them. I lost it today, and I am so thankful His mercy is new…and He is changing me from glory to glory. But He knew I’d have these days, so He wanted to remind me…and you..that teaming up with him, makes life easy and light. Don’t miss the forest for the trees! Keep your eyes on His unforced rhythms of grace.
Matthew 11:28-30 “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”