Wednesday, April 10, 2013

I Cannot Do it All

Busy mom, full life.
After a week of losing myself in nursing a sick boy back to health, my brain got bogged down with life events that delay certain aspirations (like blogging).  As a mom, I find myself here a lot.  I'm dying to get a haircut and a pedicure, but I'm limited on hours sans kids- and there are still soccer practices, dishes, laundry, and homework. I slept through precious early morning quiet times, because I was physically drained.  I napped through writing hours, because I was trying to catch up.

And then I remembered, I CANNOT DO IT ALL AT ONCE.  Calm down, Dani.  You will get it all done eventually.  Pace, yourself.  There are children to take care of and dinners to cook, and those are as important as everything on your to-do list.

So when I recently read an article in which Drew Barrymore declares that women can't have it all, I was like, "THANK YOU!" Of all the voices, a successful Hollywood actress who probably has every resource available to make the rest of us believe that she can do it all, admits that it isn't possible.  You can only focus so much time and energy into a few things to do them well.  If you throw yourself into your career, you will definitely become an expert at what you do and make strides towards titles and pay raises.  If you spend time honing your craft or practicing your hobby, you will become better at it.  If you choose to invest most of your energy into raising kids and managing a home, you will build a strong family. 

Homework before soccer practice 3 afternoons/week.
Unfortunately, when you choose the latter, the successes are often quiet and invisible.  There aren't award ceremonies to celebrate the spelling test your daughter passed after you helped her study. You're not invited to banquets to announce the masterful job you did organizing the pantry.  But take note of those little moments when your kindergartener starts reading and the cookout you planned goes off without a hitch. Whenever your kids are singing on stage and making homemade cards for you, it makes your heart smile.  That is a wonderful feeling- better than any framed certificate on your wall.

It's okay to put off some tasks that you want to do, if it means that you're trading it for something better- time with your family and much needed rest.  You will get back to it.  You will conquer the cleaning soon. I will write again. Let's give ourselves grace, and take it one day- one bite-sized morsel at a time. 

I am admitting that I cannot do it all, but I can do one important thing today: I can be MOM. I can do that.
The other things can wait.


Unknown said...

I love you Dani and I love listening to the things you have to say. It's funny how people so far away from you can make you feel better about yourself then the people close to you.

Dani Byham said...

Angie! Thank you. I'm so glad I can help. While I try to encourage other moms, I'm simultaneously giving myself pep talks too :-) Have a good day and keep in touch!

Unknown said...

I read the article you referred to above, and was so encouraged by it. As a full time working Mom (by necessity more than choice), I feel the strain of juggling as well! Yet in life, when I seek Christ first, when I prioritize my priorities (my husband, my son, my home...) faithfulness in the things that aren't "#1" somehow becomes easier as well.

Thank you for the encouragement!

Dani Byham said...

Go, Monica! When we come up against heavy loads of responsibilities, stepping back and prioritizing is so important. Does it work for my family? How much can I honestly handle? It also helps to remember that mom guilt never did us any good and comparison is a trap.