Saturday, July 5, 2008

Great Email

This is from a dear friend in reply to my email of being overwhelmed last week. I think she's right on.

I wrote:
Having an overwhelmed day. Feeling nervous about starting school next week even though we’re “just” doing pre-k type stuff. Feeling inadequate esp. when compared to my teacher trained elem school friends. Feel insecure. Feel like I have to keep busy busy and feeling frantic though there isn’t really that much new stuff to do. Wanting to go through my house head to toe and get rid of more stuff – I don’t want to keep getting “stuff” and always have to be managing the “stuff.” Too tired and emotionally drained to have anything left for my poor husband and feeling bad about that on the one hand and “oh well. Too bad for him” on the other. Going to try to sit still and journal at nap time today… have such a need for constant productivity. Need for worth I think, but don’t really understand why. Trying to figure it out with my counselor. Unable to sit still. Feel like “if I can just…” in so many areas that the house would be under better control, but I know it’s not really true- at least not all the time. Lack of patience with my two year old. Tantrums are so draining.

My friend's reply:
I'm right there with you. I've had so many days like that. I have to believe that it's Satan. He doesn't want us at home. He doesn't want us to homeschool and he doesn't want us to have good marriages. I wish I had some great advice but lately I've found that all I can do is just lay it all before God and ask Him to help me and take over where I can't complete things.

You've always been such a successful and way-above-average person. It's hard to see a dirty toilet and mounds of dishes. Then see the reading lesson that you were supposed to finish 3 days ago still sitting on the "to-do" pile.

If it's any comfort... I did a HORRIBLE job with my son's school this year. He hardly got anything from me the entire 4 months that we had our foster child. It seemed like we always had to go to the dentist or doctor or grocery store and we were never "home" to homeschool. I just gave him an informal standardized test for first grade and he scored at the very top in all categories. I know that was God. It couldn't be the sorry performance I put in. I know that God is honoring our effort to follow His plan for us. Then it has become painfully obvious that our second son has learning problems. Two days ago this same son read a BOB book with 3 letter words. It was AWESOME and I had to hold back the tears so that he didn't think I'd totally lost it.

This is a war we are in but we don't have to worry about the outcome. God has already claimed the victory. There will be lots of pain. There will be tons of knocks to our self-worth and confidence. Just when we think we've relaxed and found a peaceful groove and routine, something else will come up.

Do you have a cleaning lady? Most homeschool moms I know say that they have very messy houses and they all have cleaning ladies too. We really can't afford it but we're going to anyway for my sanity, you know?

Yesterday, I went to a friend's house from church to return baby stuff she left me borrow. She is very rich and she lives in a huge mansion. The house has all handcrafted wood and marble. She has her own "school room" to homeschool her 4 kids. It's awesome. She has a cleaning lady 2 times per week. Must be nice, right? Well, I arrived much earlier than I thought and she wasn't home yet but her teenage daughter was. The house was a wreck! There were papers all over the floor. There were dirty dishes all over the fancy kitchen. It might sound mean but it made me feel so good. It made me feel like all the money in the world won't change my situation. I am going to make a big effort to quit beating myself up and just try to roll with life.

I heard a speaker say this one time and it has always stuck with me... If Jesus walked into your house right this very minute, what would he be impressed by? Would he care about the dust on the shelves? Would he care that your children are safe and feel loved? Would he care that there is a block of moldy cheese in the refrigerator drawer? I'm pretty sure that I know what He would care about and I'm just shooting for those things, you know?

I love you so much. I also admire you. You are doing God's work. He has given you a precious ministry to your family and you have "done well good and faithful servant." Know that you are deeply loved and revered and that there are a ton of us moms battling this out right along side you. (If you meet someone who seems like they've got it all together, they usually don't.) Things are usually so icky that they've learned how to cover it all up so that they don't have to face it or let anyone else see it. Don't listen to people who think that there is a way to "have it all" clean house, happy kids, brilliant kids, happy husband, skinny body, - it's a lie! We all fall short of perfect and all we can do is try to bring honor and glory to God every day. You have done that and you have shown others how to do that.

I love you, girl.

Take care.


:)De said...

Wow!You seem to be very loved by your friend. That is encouraging and nice to see.