Do you ever feel physically beaten up? Today was one of those days for me. We have hit a stride with our 7-month old, which is A.W.E.S.O.M.E. He is an amazingly easy baby. Which is good because his older brothers may well kill me. All before breakfast I had handed out two bouts with time-out, one spanking and multiple "this behavior is unacceptable" discussions. I so did not expect to be navigating the world of "he hit me" and "I had it first" so soon. You wiser, well-versed Moms are laughing aren't you? This is the stuff of toddler years, isn't it?
My Dad is a Pastor, and like myself, he is a true introvert. He would often come home after a day of ministry and report that he was out of "people dollars." Ya'll can I confess that these days this Mommy is nearly bankrupt of toddler dollars well before noon? Before NOON?! I don't bother to pray for patience anymore. I'm not sure there is enough. I do, however, pray for stamina. They are wearing me down!
I have found that on days like these commiseration is sometimes the best encouragement. I need girlfriends. I need someone to say "I know what you are going through." And while my husband is a remarkable man, he doesn't get it. How could he? This is a unique job the scope of which can't really be appreciated over a 4-hour stint while I'm out with my girlfriends. Recently I was trying to explain how stinkin' hard this is. I said that while I wouldn't trade staying at home what I did from 8-5 at Chick-fil-A (where I worked full-time before staying home) was WAY easier than what I do now.
(Now, for all you working Mom's I know you have the double portion. You do all I do and work. I know getting up at o'dark thirty and hauling kids to a sitter/daycare, sitting in traffic, and getting to work without getting cheerios or spit up on your outfit takes a literal act of God. I did it for four months, and I don't envy you.)
What I did at Chick-fil-A was hard, but so much easier than this. I felt daily affirmed and rewarded. I was valued. I saw immediate pay-off for hard work, etc, etc, etc. My sweet husband looked at me intently and said, "then go back to work; our household budget would thank you." You see, he can't understand.
This is the hardest and best thing I've ever done. I wouldn't trade it for all the money in the world. But today I am tired of explaining why sharing makes Jesus happy. I am tired of cleaning up spit up. For today I wish I could see that this is making a difference. For just today I want someone to say I have been there. How about you?
For the rest of this week I will be at the Proverbs 31 She Speaks Conference. I'll be investing my dollars in other women who feel called to speak, write, lead and serve all for the glory of God in the name of the Gospel. In my absence, enjoy some Mommy meltdowns and moments from some of my dearest girlfriends at Proverbs 31. They'll be sharing Mommy moments from the trenches. Many of them are well on the other side so they know what they are talking about. Be encouraged-oh, and laugh at their expense, they won't mind.
Hugs until next week.