I broke my favorite flipping spatula when I threw it in the sink yesterday (it literally is the kind you use to flip things). That was right after I sent every kid to their room and yelled like a crazy person to no one in particular.
“You wanna yell…I can yell louder.”
“You wanna complain…I can complain longerrrrrrrrr!!” You better believe I held out that er for affect.
And then I cried. Wracking sobs of failure and defeat.
That was my favorite spatula!
This is not the mom I want to be!! I knew Gunn was going to be home any minute but I just could not take it anymore. Not one more complaint, not one more question, not one more disrespectful attitude.
Before I got married I was once told “you may get to a day where you think, ‘what have I gotten myself into? Why did I do this?’ And when that happens don’t be afraid, it’s normal and it will pass.”
Good news, it’s true. Bad news, I have gotten to that point in parenting so many times and I’m beginning to fear it is not going to pass. What if I really feel this way forever?
I know that can’t be true because when they are all asleep the love I have covers all the offenses, or at least most of them. I stare at their precious little faces and I cry tears of gratitude that they are mine.
How can you love someone so much and also want to not be around them very much? But I guess that’s not true either. I do want to be around them, just not when they are whining and questioning my competency.
I had three revelations this week.
1. I am not fighting my kids, I am fighting for them, I just forget sometimes.
We got a babysitter and went to a prayer and worship night. I wanted to be with Jesus but even more I wanted to be away from parenting. Praise God that even when our motives aren’t completely pure, He is. While we sang and prayed and people spoke the words of God I remembered Ephesians 6:12, “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers against the authorities against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.”
And I felt like God was saying “you think you are fighting against your kids, but really you are fighting for them. The enemy wants to keep the girls in the system and cycle they have been born into. He wants to blind the boys from the love of God. He wants to ruin the peace God has put in you. You are fighting 5 years olds, but you need to stop fighting them and remember where the real fight is.”
So I want to stop the petty fights that are distracting me from the real war.
2. God accounted for my failures way before he called me and I don’t have to waste time living in guilt and shame and identifying as a failure.
As a friend prayed for me she reminded me that it doesn’t all depend on me. Failure is expected, God’s not surprised. His blood covers every sin, both mine and their’s.
And the next morning I read Romans 8:1. “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”
It’s just so true! “In Christ” is my true identity! I have been letting my failure blind me to all the goodness. The goodness of God, the goodness of my children, and all the things I have to be thankful for! I couldn’t see them when I was so consumed with my guilt and shame!
3. God loves humility so parenting is probably not going to get easier anytime soon.
These people humble me over and over again and I think God let’s it keep happening because my pride is so big and He loves humility in his people.
“One’s pride will bring him low, but he who is lowly in spirit will obtain honor.” Proverbs 23:29
And perhaps my favorite part of humbling myself was the encouragement I got from others when I did! I felt like I was supposed to share my failure and God’s sweet grace with others. I got to share at church and when I did I was blessed by the love, prayer and support of other women and fellow mamas who were in it with me!
It was just a great reminder that there is so much blessing to be had when I am real about my shortcomings and needs and invite others in to help.
Praise God for His grace and forgiveness! Praise God for freedom! And praise God Gunn bought me a new flippin’ spatula on his way home.
January 14, 2020 at 5:19 am
Hey Deborah, just came upon your blog tonight and this entry was so spot on and encouraging for me. Although, obviously, I am not a parent yet, I have spent the past 5 months student teaching 180 high schoolers and I felt exactly how you felt today at school. So frustrated and fed up and just done. All days aren’t like this, but today was. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and prayers and reflections… I sure needed a bit of encouragement tonight!
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