I received another gem in my email and just had to share…
So, I took this online quiz which informed me that I should only have one child because I’m “just not cut out for this motherhood thing.” Apparently, the makers of this quiz were unimpressed with my “go to meal” of boxed macaroni and cheese and my inability to hold someone’s hair back while they vomit. They would probably be horrified to know that I am expecting my fifth child!
What I found amusing is that the makers of the quiz pretty much touched on all of the areas in which we moms tend to compare ourselves to each other. You know how it goes. You see some kid at church with the cutest outfit. You ask the mom where she bought it only to discover that it was handmade. Meanwhile, you don’t even own a needle and thread. Or, maybe, you’ve never made a meal that was Pinterest worthy and no one has ever asked for the recipe for your end of the week Leftovers Casserole.
Motherhood was never meant to be a competition sport. We are all on the same team. We have different strengths and weaknesses. We have all been equipped for good works – just equipped differently. We are to do everything to the glory of God utilizing the gifts that we have each been given.
So, don’t be intimidated by that crafty mom who makes unbelievable treats for her child’s classroom party. Applaud her for her efforts because I promise she struggles in another area. On the flip side, don’t judge the mom who always signs up to bring the paper goods because she probably rocks at kissing boo boos and telling bedtime stories.
I’m going to leave you with just a few promises that you can claim, as a mother, regardless of your sewing or culinary skills.
1. You are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14.)
2. You are thoroughly equipped (2 Timothy 3:17.)
3. You have God-given gifts (1 Corinthians 7:7.)
We need to learn to appreciate each other’s gifts without devaluing our own gifts. What you do, fellow mom, is amazing. The day in and day out of it all takes commitment and hard work and it is not for the faint of heart. I’m proud of what you do – whether it’s homemade treats or store bought cookies. Whether it’s chicken noodle soup from scratch or Ramen noodles from a pack. There is no condemnation for those up to their necks in motherhood.
So, serve that boxed Mac and cheese with pride. Hold your head high when you deliver those paper goods to your child’s classroom. I know that’s what I’m going to do.
Carry on, moms. We are all in this together.
Meet the author:
Stacy Edwards (@sjedwards) is a trucker’s daughter and a pastor’s wife. She is married to Michael Edwards, the Evangelism and Recreation Pastor at Living Hope. She is a freelance writer and a homeschooling mom to four little girls. Stacy blogs at Servant’s Life where she uses her words to point others to the hope and encouragement found in Christ. If you need her, she’s probably hiding in the bathroom.
Do you know a mom who needs encouragement? Why don’t you pass this on to her?
I finally fessed up. To my husband. To my Church group. To myself.
The guilt of a working mother.
The two things really helping me with the guilt right now
1. I know baby girl won’t remember these days.
2. Running. It keeps me on an endorphin high – my drug of choice.
Even still, the guilt lurks beneath the surface, rearing its hoary head anytime I take a moment for myself during her waking hours.
Stomach rumbling, I quickly whipped up Bacon & Onion Linguine (my favorite Lidia Bastianich recipe) and inhaled a bowl. “You shouldn’t be wasting time like this,” whispers my conscience. “You could be eating a peanut butter sandwich and get to her more quickly.”
I don’t even sit to eat. I burn my tongue as I inhale my supper. My eye is on the clock.
Now, a quick shower. After a long day of work, I stink and I need to clean up.
The guilt rises. “If you wouldn’t have wasted time with food, you wouldn’t feel so bad about taking the time for a shower.” The stress mounts as the clock ticks on.
By the time I reach my Mother-in-Love’s house to pick baby girl up, she’s asleep. She’s been asleep for 15 minutes. She had a tough time going down and had to be carried and rocked. The guilt is overwhelming. “See. I told you so. If you would’ve just sacrificed more, this wouldn’t have happened. YOU would’ve been the one there for her when she needed you. Someone else had to bear YOUR burden. So selfish.”
I purse my lips and try to ignore the sinking feeling in my heart. To get her home I have to wake her up and take her into the bitter cold, strap her into the car seat, listen to her poor little tired cries as I drive the short distance home, all while wishing this evening could’ve worked out differently. I had planned it differently. Sometimes our plans get derailed and the outcome simply sucks.
And sometimes something happens to turn it all back around.
I got home, and as I pulled into the garage, I thought baby girl must be asleep. She was quiet, so she must be asleep. As I crawled into the back seat, I was greeted by a big, toothy grin. The cries were long gone. And so was my guilt.
We played happily for nearly two hours, a rare evening to be sure. She crawled, she laughed, she squealed, she pulled up, tried to walk and talk. Amidst the joyous babbling, my heart swelled and my soul found contentment once again. She may not remember these days, oh, but I will. And when I do, warmth will fill my heart and the joy in my soul will be reflected in my smile.
The following morning, I was up at 4 am for a 6 mile run. It was an incredible run. I had absolutely zero knee pain and I felt on top of the world. I attributed it to an extra day of rest, but looking back… I think it was the joy of a baby’s laughter that carried me through those early morning miles.