When the world tells you to do more, be more, expect MORE … it’s hard to be content.
Girl, grab a coffee, curl up in your chair for a moment (or hide in the bathroom if you must) and let’s have a heart to heart.
In case you’ve been wondering and you think you might have lost all sanity over the sleepless nights, I will assure you, the world IS out to get you.
Trying desperately to fill you mind with lies, with partial truths, with just enough “motivation” to create a sense of desperation.
Enough to keep you running a race you were never made to be in.
> > Sister, you don’t have to run. < <
You don’t have to keep up. Not right now. Not to the lies of pop CULTure.
I get it and have bought into it all too often. Falling victim to the whispers that I simply don’t measure up.
The weight didn’t come off as fast as that first time mom birthing a six pounder in her early twenties. My house looks more like a scene from Twister, after the carnage of an F5, than it does the latest spread of the Joanna Gaines Magazine. My work from home opportunity or idea hasn’t materialized overnight into a multi-million dollar empire despite all the wishing it into the universe crap personal development feeds us. And my children … my troop of kids, they are still rocking that mismatched, thrift store vibe as opposed to the perfectly coordinated grey pallet that is all the rage.
Let me tell you, the whispers are LOUD sometimes.
You aren’t winning the race. You aren’t even qualifying.
My life is a mess, if I am honest with you. If I measure my success to the message the world is feeding me at every turn.
My hair is tossed up in a messy bun more often than not. I can’t remember the last time I woke up, showered, brushed my teeth and put my face on without being interrupted by thirty-two questions about why poop is brown. I honestly can’t even remember the last time I got to do all the previously mentioned things unless I specifically notified everyone in the house that I needed to accomplish them all.
I’ve tried to scrounge up enough clothing from my maternity, postpartum and pre-baby wardrobe to create something presentable but typically leave the house in yoga pants and a tank top stained with my own breast milk. Yoga pants, which I will mention, that are see through because they may or may not be a size too small. My only criteria these days is ensuring there is no camel toe. And even that’s a losing battle.
As I write the list of ways in which I am failing to measure up there is the ever present voice whispering in the background, “What about the fact that last week you ordered pizza three times. Don’t forget to mention how, for the past three weeks you’ve opted for tossing bagels or bowls of cereal at your children in morning instead of fruits and yogurt.”
And girl, it’s not the healthy cereal.
It’s the cereal that you grab so that your child finally shuts up in the grocery store long enough for you to make your quick escape out of the cereal isle. Why do we even take them through the cereal isle?!
You aren’t winning the race. You aren’t being all you can be. You aren’t doing everything you can do. You aren’t winning.
And if you aren’t winning, you are losing.
And losing sucks.
And so you spiral. You can’t find your footing as you are forever restarting, rehashing, rethinking what it is you are supposed to be doing when you REALLY should be doing everything. And doing it all well.
Like so well that you can post those IG ready photos at any given moment. Filter free.
Your house is clean.
Your workout was on pointe and you are the perfect amount of sweaty, it looks like you gave it your all and yet still you are super cute.
You just cooked an amazing meal that you’ve plated like something from one of the final rounds of MasterChef, you totally need to snap a picture of that and hashtag it eat well everyday.
You are blowing it up in your MLM opportunity, like everyone and their sister wants to be a part of your team because it is so dang inspiring. I mean, people are joining left, right, and centre and no one knows what it is you REALLY do …
You’ve killed it in the child raising department, you are forever taking pictures of you and your crew spending hours at the park and wondering in the woods because kids *hashtag* need fresh air.
And your love life.
Ohhh girl, your love life looks like something from the Bachelor except that you aren’t a tramp and you save all that sultry for you and your husband. Let’s just say that, if you weren’t so good with your birth control you would have five kids by now.
Yeah, that was my attempt at poking fun at the fact that we have five children.
Do you feel as exhausted reading that list as I did typing it?
Because, for real. The list of demands and promises is never ending.
There is no shortage of motivational quotes and quips to get you started and to keep you going.
But going at what?
Running in what direction?
Can you seriously just pick one?
The more and more time I spend reading, talking with girlfriends and just lost in the scroll, the more I am convinced that THIS is not a race we are made to endure.
Everywhere you look there is someone telling you that you can be happier, healthier, richer if you just put your mind to it. If you just *decide* that TODAY will be the day that things will be different. You’ll chase your dreams today, invest in yourself, FINALLY find that magic pill to get it all done.
OBVIOUSLY, you will also do this while being a stellar mother, a fantastic lover, and the REAL “youngest” self-made billionaire.
You will do it all because you CAN, if you just DECIDE to.
I call bol*fricken*ogna. That’s bologna with a fricken in the middle there for you who are wondering.
What if it’s all a desperate chasing of the wind.
What if all the motivational quotes and quick rises to fame on the back of a “stop believing all the lies” book, is just another attempt at blowing smoke up our @$s. << yup, it got cussy.
Each rah rah book about believing more and achieving more was distracting us from the things that matter most.
Chasing what the world tells us is important while ignoring, or starving, what is of true significance.
You see, the more I read, the more I research and talk with my friends, the MORE I think on what we were create for … the more aware I am that not many directions point us back to Christ. Not many call us to focus on our families and our relationships.
The things that, when the Internet crashes and Facebook finally shuts down, will remain.
People and relationships with eternal significance.
How often do you read something that compels you so strongly to chase God’s love, to serve humbly at home, and to relish in what is right in front of you while also encouraging you to build a legacy?
Because you can’t share it as easily. You can’t promote it from the rooftops when you are on your knees in the living room. You can’t say, “Hey look at ME, at ME living MY best life!”
I mean, don’t get me wrong. I have read many a GREAT parenting book, a solid faith renewal personal development story. But I have yet to come across something that starts starkly by saying, “If you have children STOP. Right here. And REFOCUS.”
Something that reminds us that we have a bigger, more immediate calling in our lives and that isn’t to win the popularity contest that is Social Media.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I am not saying that, as a mother we must scrap all ambitions, nor should we as a Christian.
I believe that God has placed BIG dreams and charges in the minds and hearts of mothers.
I don’t believe, however, that he has placed conflicting ambition in us.
That we should struggle with the NEED to succeed. To be THE fittest, THE friendliest, THE most successful women ever to walk the face of the Earth.
He hasn’t called us to be and do it all.
Not on our own and not in this season.
He has called us to shepherd sone young hearts. To set an example of prioritizing what matters and letting all else come in it’s season.
I’m waiting on a book that says, “WOMAN, I know you have big goals for your body, for your home, for your business, but those desires have a time and the time is not now. Right now you have one opportunity to raise your children. To show them what it means to have balance and perspective. To be discerning enough to realize that you cannot do it all and that most of what the world calls you to is not stuff you need to be doing right now.”
Because I have yet to read it from someone else bold enough to put it out there, I am going to share it.
Girl – It’s OK.
It’s OK to pause in this season of motherhood long enough to smell the roses. To call bologna on the worlds ever INCREASING volume of distraction and focus on the face in front of you.
It’s OK to want nothing more than to be home with your children while they are still small. To shy away from building the thriving business because you realize that running a “company” is not necessarily the same type of freedom you actually want for your family.
Woman, it is OK to admit that you are sick and tired of listening to the noise. And not just the sound of your children screaming at each other thirty seconds after they hop out of bed. But the noise of the world TEARING you from what matters most.
In fact, if we pause and quiet that noise, we will hear the harmony that is this season.
When we stop “refreshing” our lives in hopes that we will be able to keep up with the expectation of the world, we may find what we have been searching for so desperately.
It’s not the smaller pant size, the polished porcelain, nor the bulging fat stacks in your wallet.
No, those things will com and those things can wait.
If we stop long enough to hear the pulse of our lives, we will realize that the drone of Social Media and all the motivational bull carp *see what I did there* is really a heart attack waiting to happen.
Our pulse, our rhythm is found in walking in faith. In stepping outside of the call to do more, be more, and expect more. Instead finding contentment in the chaos, in living for a legacy.
We, as mothers, are not called to do it all, all the time. We are called to do this. For only a short time.
You see, we have loads of opportunity to get this fitness thing right. There is ample opportunity to coordinate your home with throw pillows and shag rugs. You’ll find yourself, in a short while, with more than enough time to build an empire that provides “financial freedom”.
But trust me sister, you will never get this time back.
You will never get this moment of motherhood back.
The time to pray for your friend as they traverse a difficult time, you won’t get it back.
So stop filling your head with the crap that says you need to live your best life RIGHT NOW.
That’s the world’s way of wrapping you up and stealing you away.
Realize that this “race” is not one we are meant to run. We are meant to do a few things REALLY well.
The first of which is to lay down the ME and MY BEST LIFE attitude and focus on the call He has placed when he gave you that precious bundle of chaos (or five).
I’m certain that the way we honour God best is to put Him, and His most trusted little people, first. Because this season is not cyclical. This season comes once.
This is one thing that you get ONE shot at. One opportunity. Don’t miss it chasing the wind.