Featured image credit: Nine Kopfer
Last Saturday was a rough day.
The last couple of weeks, I’ve been on fire for helping moms understand that all our kids need or want is us. They’re not monitoring the to-do list check marks, they’re not comparing activities done last week to this week, or to what their friends moms offer. They’re simply not.
All they want is you. To know that they’re special to someone, and they’d really like that someone to be you. They want you to have time for them, to laugh with them, to show them to do things, and to do things with them. They aren’t looking for the competitive angle, or the projection from last week to this week and next week. They just want you to look at the cool rock they just found, to listen to their book summary, or to hear the latest school drama.
That’s great and all, but sometimes, that’s not possible.
I’ve talked before about how I’ve struggled with depression for the last couple of years. It comes and goes – either I am the most encouraging person you’ve met this year, or I wish I could rock in a corner and disappear, there is no in between. I have high-functioning depression, meaning no one knows by looking at me that I have a massive B of an inner voice, I’m very duty-driven.
Saturday was one of those days. I woke up wallowing in self pity, feeling completely worthless and pointless, like no one would miss me. I have an online recruiting business, run this blog, and parent full time, the house was hit by a toddler tornado, and the sink was full, I deliver papers every overnight, and the house needs a lot of TLC I don’t have the time or cash for. Who here is in the overwhelmed group?
I was in a serious funk, and snapped at my husband all morning, trying to give him the jest that while he gets fistfuls of credit for bringing his company’s location payroll down 13% this month, I wash rinse repeat without a word. I read plenty of blogs that talk about how one parent, usually the one that stays at home, feels like they’re invisible, and the bully that lives rent-free in my head was telling me just that.
No one cares. They could live in filth without me and they’d be fine with it. They can just buy bread, I don’t need to make it. When he runs out of underwear, maybe he’ll figure out how to carry some laundry two rooms over and turn that mystic machine on. Who cares if I’m around.
I don’t talk faith often on GrowingSpangs, but all last week John 10:10 kept running through my head as I encouraged other moms on Instagram, thought about posts to write, and messaged a personal friend going through some life tests.
“The thief comes to steal, kill and destroy; I come so that they may have life, and have it to the full.”
Some versions use the word “abundantly”. Not partially, not sometimes, but to the fullest.
I have often thought about how distracted we have been made in recent years, and how our focus has drastically shifted from our family, friends, faith…even beloved hobbies. We’re just too busy on the “must do’s”. We’re so busy being social, that we’re not ever social, and our to-do lists grow under our own watch, not someone else’s.
On Saturday, I was definitely feeling like my life was no where near abundant or full. I had spent the week prior being an encouragement, being reminded of the goodness of that verse, the pure redemption, just to have it ripped away from me on a Saturday morning by my chronic self-loathing.
Did I? Was that verse actually gone? It didn’t apply anymore?
As I prepared to tongue lash my husband yet again that morning for some menial thing, it again came – the thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy. Satan lives to squash our hopes and dreams, marriages and relationships. Where there is goodness, there will be negativity. Jesus himself even promises it.
That tongue-lash caught in my throat. I will not be destroyed.
Later that day, we went to a three-year old’s birthday party. The kids were so eager to smash a pinata Chase from Paw Patrol, and I stood there thinking “Chase, I feel you dude. That’s how I feel right now…everyone wants a crack at me, I’m batted every direction…I get you.”
Nevermind the squeals of laughter from a group of toddlers. It was my daughter’s first pinata she had ever seen, and she sure didn’t want to stop trying to hit it, she didn’t even know there were rewards inside.
Sometimes, we just need to take a step back. What is actually our priorities in life? Our families? Our friends or faith? A forgotten hobby?
Or simply, to live life, and live abundantly?
Don’t let negativity win. It will always, always be there. Twirl it into a rope and pull someone else out of their depths with it instead.
Your turn: Everyone struggles to some degree with balancing priorities, being intentional, or even mental health. What’s your story? Where do you see pieces of redemption in it?
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