Monday, September 12, 2022

a dance I didn't know existed

The saying about when it rains it pours is totally true. And probably part of why adults have anxiety? Things have been rolling along like a proverbial train, homeschooling, child-reading, battling my own sin nature, digging deep in God's word, shoving as much natural medicine knowledge into my head as possible...

Until, yesterday! 

I have found lately that I don't like myself much. I am in an overly critical phase or something. Please tell me its a phase and not the new normal because I don't want to be a judgmental crab apple of a person forever. I have noticed a trend of either oversimplifying people/situations or staring down my nose with a hindsight bias attitude. Neither of which are helpful or kind to whatever crisis a person is currently going through.

Example: a friend of mine texted me she was so tired, she had been up for 9 nights with a sick 9 month old baby. I typed back "my husband and I take turns when this happens so that at least one of us is sleeping". I reread what I had typed and erased it. I wrote instead "I understand, you sound exhausted, praying for you more". Then I offered to bring her hummus and sourdough pita tomorrow. 

In the course of writing the advice portion, I realized that my kids are 4 and 7 and not a breastfeeding 9 month old, and that my "husband and I taking turns" really only works because my kids are older. We were not able to take turns when the kids were little, and I had forgotten that. A breastfeeding baby does not want daddy at 9am. At least, mine didn't.

Also she didn't ask for advice, and giving her that kind of advice in the middle of her sleep-deprived state wasn't helpful. She's a smart human, she's doing all she can. I resolved from now on not to try to "fix" problems but instead help, if I can. 

Is this what 35 is? Am I evolving into a kind and caring creature? 

In the last two days we have learned:

  • my mother in law has covid (she's doing fine)
  • friend with sick baby finally went to the ER and the baby has RSV
  • another friend had a car wreck (she's okay. was scary!)
  • drove to the dentist with my husband (stressful!!) for Reuben
  • ended a week of family stay-cation 
  • church drama
  • family drama 
and more. I could go on--I am amazed at how much Reuben has grown and matured but I keep stepping on his 7-year old toes and forgetting the myriad of things he really can do for himself. And that I need to stop micromanaging him and I need to start letting him make more decisions for himself. I have frustrated him a lot since he turned seven doing things that he had no qualms about me doing/or deciding when he was six. Growing up is hard. Being a mama to someone who is growing up is hard. Navigating communication, tasks, and independence is a dance I didn't know existed. 

But through it all God is good and usually I maintain my trust and calm as I abide in him. 

Philippians 4:4-9

Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. 

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.

Our ladies bible study at church is studying 1 Samual this semester and it has been just what I needed. 

God is good and I hope I can be the mother God would want me to be for Reuben and Rebekah. And the wife for my husband, and a good supportive friend to all those who I am honored to call friends. Here is to 35 and all the insights it offers, even if they are about my personality and it's flaws. 

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