The Life Not My Own

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Not In Control

I'm one of those people that likes to make lists and schedules.  I like to feel like I have it all together.  In all honesty, I want others to think that as well.  I want them to think I'm great at juggling being a wife and mom.  I want them to believe that my house is always clean, and that I always have a delicious meal ready at supper time.  

You want to know the truth, though?  I have never felt so disorganized in my whole life as in these seven months since Miles was born.  There have days when my house has looked like a complete pig-sty and my only "accomplishment" for the day was getting my makeup on.  I can't tell you how many nights Andy has come home from work to find dinner not even close to being ready, and me asking if we can just go out somewhere....again.  I've had to drop a lot of my outside commitments.  Hey, blogging, something that I truly love to do, has even fallen through the cracks.  The weird part, however, is that I've become surprisingly okay with all of that.

As I've written about before, Miles is no easy baby.  These days he's mostly happy during the day, and I can breathe a little bit easier.  But he's still not one to happily play in a bouncer seat or spend hours on his playmat.  Usually, me trying to tackle the pile of dishes in the sink consists of Miles sitting on the floor at my feet, with me giving him something new to play with every minute or so.  Even then, that might last 10 minutes and he's bored.  He is thoroughly unpredictable.  I'm not even going to tell you how many times he was up last night.

Miles has challenged almost every pre-conceived notion I had about motherhood, babies, and parenting.  I found that a lot of my time and research during pregnancy went out the window within days of his birth (okay, hours).  And yet, through it all, I've felt that Still, Small, Voice consistently telling me to "let go, and let God".  I have been learning to daily let go of my need for control, and instead surrend everything to the One Who is Able.  I've been laying down that image I have of what it means to be the "perfect" wife and mother, and instead letting Him mold me into the wife and mother He wants me to be.  Through it all, I have found the most amazing peace.  There is so much joy in not being in control...in not even thinking you need to be!

Recently, I heard another new mom described as "having it all together".  Her baby was sleeping well at night and was on a good schedule.  She seemed to be effortlessly keeping up with all the demands of life.

For a minute, I felt a twinge of jealousy.  I wanted to be the mom that everyone described as "having it all together".  I began plotting ways of "proving" how truly on top of things I was.  But then that Still, Small Voice tapped quietly on the door of my heart.  

"Remember," It said, "that's not who I'm calling you to be.  That's not the kind of mom Miles needs, or the kind of wife Andy wants.  That's not the woman I want you to be."

I realized that in not being that mom,  I was taking the path that God was calling me, specifically, to.

We all have areas of our life that He is refining us in.  For me, it has been a slow, steady chipping away at my need for control.  I could never have dreamed that God would use one sweet baby boy to change me so much.  Yet, I know that every refining moment, no matter how difficult, is all a part of His plan.  It's all a part of His process of shaping me into the woman of God He wants me to be.

Today my house is fairly tidy.  Dinner is cooking in the crock pot, and the floor doesn't look like a muddy bear invaded.  But there are still dirty dishes in the sink.  There's still laundry waiting to be folded, a checkbook that needs to be balanced, and a toilet that needs a good scrubbing.  I couldn't imagine having free time to work outside of the home, or get busy on a sewing project.  I certainly don't have everything together, and I'm far from in control of my daily life.  And that's okay.     

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4 Comments:

  • At March 7, 2013 at 12:38 PM , Blogger Grace Adele said...

    Wow! Thank you for such encouraging words!! I needed to hear this. :)

     
  • At March 7, 2013 at 1:25 PM , Blogger Rachel said...

    I doubt anyone has it together really. I certainly feel like I'm living in chaos! I think the hardest thing is looking after a baby doesn't give immediate results...I often feel like I achieve nothing all day!
    Thanks for such an honest and encouraging post.

     
  • At March 8, 2013 at 2:06 PM , OpenID mrsjordanhobble said...

    I agree with Rachel, I don't think anyone really has it all together. So many of the young moms I know nearly kill themselves trying to establish that 'perfect' schedule for their baby, while doing everything else - in fact, at our church one of the most frequently asked questions in the nursery is, "When did your baby start sleeping through the night?" If the answer is 8 wks or less, you are a success. If, like me, the answer is, "Um... not yet (and yes, he's six months old)" then you are perceived as a little bit of a failure. This is only one of many unrealistic expectations we women set for ourselves, and it can be so hard letting go. It's nice to hear, for a change, that I'm not the only one! :) Thanks for sharing!

     
  • At March 12, 2013 at 10:57 AM , Blogger Caitlin Baker said...

    Yes, I still get asked that question all the time! I just answer very vaguely. I've learned that very few of the babies at church actually sleep through the night...but most of their parents are just as hesitant to admit it as we are!

     

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