Quicksand Days

I need to stop spending so much money on groceries. The headache's back - drink more water. I'm never going to get my house organized the way I want it. Ugh, my hair; back in the bun it goes. My head is full but suddenly I'm bored, listless, depressed. Sucked into the mundane again.

When did all this little stuff become so big? When did I start worrying more about dirty dishes than about my husband's smiles? When did holding my beautiful baby in my arms become less than enough for me? What the heck am I even worrying about?



I keep brushing up against real hardships, hearing about women losing the people in their lives. Wives losing husbands, mothers losing children, girls losing boyfriends. In an effort to empathize with and support these women, I keep trying to picture what that would look like for me...and I can't even imagine it, can't even come close to what that would be like.

And I wonder, what's the hardest part about losing someone?

Then I have another bad day - the baby is screaming and I'm falling apart, the messes seem never-ending and I have no energy to deal with them. This week I've been sick (fevers, headaches, a wicked sore throat) while Roxy was cutting tooth #5, which means that nobody has been sleeping well. Things are piling up and I just sit with a vacant expression. I'm having all these petty, selfish thoughts. I just want to not be in this messy house anymore. Oh, my gosh, I can't even go grocery shopping without lactating onto my shirt. How did she pee on the bathroom rug? She's screaming again. I just want some freakin' silence. This sucks. Being a mom sucks. When do I get a break?

In those crappy moments, God keeps bringing me up short like my dog on a leash. He doesn't let me slouch into self-pity. He reminds me of something.

Those women who have known loss? I bet that they would give anything in the world just to have one more bad day with the person they love. Just one horrible day with a crying baby clinging to their neck. One sucky afternoon with a sore throat and a cranky husband. One hour up to their elbows in dirty dishes and smashed bananas.

They'd do all those hard parts over and more if it meant having their loved ones back in their arms just for a minute.

We constantly say that we wish things were different, that we want a change. That whatever we're going through is too annoying or hard or frustrating or pointless. We have all of these excuses and frustrations and "Why me?" moments every day and I'm not discounting them. But what if you wished away your problems, and they actually disappeared? What if the price for an easier life was your husband's life, or your child's?

In those quicksand moments that suck you into depression or self-pity, I beg of you to pause, and breathe, and notice something.

thankfulness

Don't snort and push that word away, as if I'm some naive girl throwing rose petals in the air at a funeral. Allow this word to whisper into your soul. Let it meander through your hurting heart.

thankfulness 

"Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you." (1 Thess. 5:16-18) In the midst of the good times and the bad times, we often search for God's will as if we can happen upon His master plan at any moment. But most of the time, His will for us is simple: thankfulness, prayer, rejoicing. These are God's will for you every day.

2 Corinthians 4 has some crazy things to say about our earthly troubles:
"But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us. We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed - always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body...Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal."
For us mamas, that eternity is our children's souls. That eternity is building up our husband's strength. That eternity is our own faith and perseverance being perfected through all the ugly tears, the burnt casseroles, and the sleepless nights. And I am thankful for the hard times because it means that I have people in my life who I love. I am thankful for the crappy days because when I whisper, "I'm not enough, I can't," then I know that God can.

Whether you've experience loss or not, it is all around us, and there is so much that we can gain from it. If you feel a little stuck on your problems, a little too depressed by the never-ending mundane, then check out these two posts to get a little perspective:

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