Sunday, January 20, 2013

The Big Question

I've been wanting to write this post for a while.  Every time I begin I feel like I don't know where to start.  I"m not sure I do now, but I"m going to attempt and I am going to try and be as honest and transparent as possible. As you probably know, when B came home we made the decision for me to take a one year leave of absence from my job.   We are very thankful for the opportunity to be able to do that.  The question I get most often now after being home for 4 months with the kids is, "so do you just LOVE being at home?" That, my friends, has actually been a really tough question to answer.

When I graduated college almost 10 years ago I went right into the workforce. Yes being a music teacher meant that I was home in the summers but the summers were always filled with traveling and lots of activity and once August 1st hit it was back to work to get ready for another school year.  When our daughter came along I was off for 3 months and then went back to work.  Our little girl was great with the schedule.  She loved being out and didn't mind the craziness.  Therefore, she became very used to it.  She is very outgoing and loves to be on the go and had the this same schedule for 3 1/2 years.  I didn't count on the transition being so hard for her too.  All of that being said, we were in for quite a change when B came home.  In the span of one week we went from one kid to two kids, had an instant boy toddler, and I was staying home full time.   There were definitely a few lot of times I thought, "what was I thinking?"  Then a wave of guilt would flood over me because this is what I had wanted for so long.  This is what I envied about a lot of my friends.  Not having to split my time between work and home.  Not having the rush of getting out of the house in the morning.  Not having just a few hours at night with them before bed time. Not having to clean and do laundry every weekend in a rush before the week starts again.  Why in the world was I going so crazy?  Why in the world was I STILL so tired?

You see every time a big change happens I forget that settling in takes time and lots of it.   I am also not always the greatest with change.  Going from one to two kids was a lot tougher than I had expected, especially with a boy that was into everything (you mean boys don't just lay there while you change their diaper like my daughter did?  They feel it is a game to see how much they can move?  Oh news to me).   Plus of course we were dealing with the very normal reality that any adoption brings.  Read this post to learn more about that. These were all very good things.  Just hard things at the same time.  I am very glad that the hubs didn't have to travel for business for at the least the first 6 weeks after we brought B home.   He is truly such a great help and such a wonderful leader in our family.  I know that the change was hard for him too.  It could have had to do with dealing with a slightly psychotic wife.  The good news is that as time went on I started to realize that all of this was simply part of change.  Part of something we all go through at different points of our lives.  These parts are often the best part of our lives because we realize just how much in control God really is.  We realize just how much we need Him.  We remember once again that it is all HIS STRENGTH and not ours.  It is amazing to me how followers of Jesus can so easily become lackadaisical in their walk with him, especially after having just gone through a tough time and seeing his infinite grace and mercy.  He knows this and He is there to remind just how much we truly need Him. 

Thankfully, after the fog slowly began to lift and i was getting a little more sleep, I was able to create a daily schedule that worked for all of us, B started sleeping much better throughout the night (this mama needs her sleep folks!) and A started getting used to just going to preschool and not the sitter's house every day.  I attempted as much as possible to dig into God's word every morning as we ate breakfast and got back into my normal workout routine.  Once we settled into our routine, the days started to seemed better.  We made plans with friends, took field trips, and worked on school work.  I created a cleaning schedule and grocery shopping schedule and attempted to stick to it as much as possible. This new life became our new normal.  A new normal that I began to really enjoy.   I actually got really excited when I realized that I had officially started my new job.  My stay at home mom job.  Now don't get me wrong, there are definitely challenging days.  Days that i just need a few seconds to breathe or be able to go to the bathroom by myself, or getting out of the house and piles of laundry for a few moments might be nice, but there are also wonderful days.  I love that my daughter asks to listen to the Bible every morning as we eat breakfast.  I love that I can sit and read them a book or play a game (that is after I have reminded myself that scrubbing the floors can wait and the laundry can wait because the kids are definitely more important).  I love that I'm not frazzled trying to run out the door in the morning and frazzled trying to get dinner in at night.  I love that being a mom can truly be my full time job.  Are there days when I miss my old job?  Why of course there are.  I love teaching elementary kids music.  I love the school I work in.  I love the kids.  I love the people.  But for this year, I love the job I have right now and I pray that God helps me do the best I can at it.  This morning I read out of Isaiah 64 which says,  

"But now, O Lord, you are our Father;
we are the clay, and you are our potter;
we are all the work of your hand."
I am the clay.  He is the potter.  I need to be willing, whatever job I am doing to ask God to form me into what he wills.  When I go back to my teaching job my prayer will be the same.  God, form me and mold into becoming more like you.  So, do I just LOVE staying at home?  Yes, Yes I do.  And I hope that no matter what job I am doing I love it because I am asking for God's strength and not my own.  SO perhaps, the next time you ask someone about their career.  Whether it be a stay at home mom or a work outside of the home mom, a mom that home schools, a mom that has 10 kids, a mom that 1 kid, ask her, "SO how is God shaping and molding you in this moment?" I have a feeling that conversation will lead to learning more about God's plan for us moms no matter what we do. 

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