Yesterday I had one of those wonderful, maternal gems of a day when I was able to embrace all the sweetness of my children, one of those days when my heart swelled to overflowing with thanksgiving all day long for the tremendous gift of staying home with my kids. In a moment of heart-overflow, I wrote the following post yesterday on facebook:
For those of us who spend all day everyday home with young children, amidst the chaos of laundry and legos and lunchtime, there are sweet, priceless moments hidden throughout everyday, which, when we look for them and see them and embrace them, are better and more precious than any amount of money in the bank. My account balances may make me cringe, but these priceless moments bring joy to my soul.
And I sincerely meant every word, and I still know that those words are true.
But then there are days like today.
I'm upset and frustrated. Crying, to be honest. I have been housebound for most of January due to family illness and blizzards and the simple reality of being a mom with four kids in the tundra. I have had very few opportunities to speak face to face with girlfriends. I'm an extrovert, by the way. Have I mentioned that?
I'm a summertime girl too, for some reason living in tundra.
I love the speaking ministry from which I'm on hiatus and I miss it so much. I am stormed in at home and even have yet another child home with the flu. The stomach flu is taking it's sweet time going through our family...the first child got it 10 days ago and it's slowly making its way thru us. Can't it hurry up and be gone so I can invite other moms and their kids over for coffee? Seriously.
My weekly bible study that I was sooooo excited to go to was cancelled today due to the blizzard. Which means no chatting with my friends.
I actually am supposed to speak in Pittsburgh this weekend, one of only two weekends I committed to for this entire school year, and I am PRAYING that the blizzards calm so I can go. I want to speak. I ache to teach. I want to leave my house for a short time. I want to be around adults for a couple days. I want to drink fountain pop and eat black licorice. That's what I used to do when I traveled more often.
I am sulking and upset and going out of my mind.
I'm a runner too (well, I use that term lightly. I jog slowly but consistently for fitness and mental health and peace of mind and alone time and endorphins and to feel the sunshine on my face and the breeze in my hair). I don't ever use an ipod because running is the only time in my world when its quiet and I can hear my thoughts. Except the roads are covered in ice and the wind won't stop blowing and outside of a couple runs last week when the temps finally rose and the wind quieted, I haven't run hardly at all since thanksgiving. And we cancelled my gym membership because finances are so insanely tight without me working.
(Which is Totally worth it, by the way.)
But not easy. So I have very little quiet time, little sunshine on my face, little alone time, and little exercise. And it also means my jeans are getting tight which just ticks me off.
AGGGHHH!!! If you're actually still reading this you're probably sick of my complaining. Consider yourself my girlfriend and I'm venting to you.
But I know those words God gave me yesterday are still true. All of this home-bound is worth it because in being home-bound I get to be here for the millions of moments that are priceless.
Today's just one of those days. Mama said there'd be days like this, right?
So God is telling me to draw near to him.
"Draw near to God and He will draw near to you." James 4:8.
Winter will actually end at some point. I'll be able to run in the sunshine again. My muscle mass will actually come back. Someday this financial strain will eventually be alleviated. I'll see my girlfriends again and laugh over coffee. The stomach flu will run its course and go away for several months. I trust that God will give me a green light to return more fully to the ministry I love.
Summer will come. In many ways. And then when I look back, I know I'll be thankful for the moments God brought me in my time of being home-bound.
And on days like today, my only choice is to draw near to God and he promises to draw near to me.