The Death of Perfection

I am procrastinating. That’s the new me. I wasn’t always like this. I used to host a Christmas party for my choirs (about 40 people) and I would start cooking and freezing in October. I would put on a spread! The house was decorated completely for Christmas with luminaries lining the driveway. And that was the busiest time of year for a choir director! Of course, I only had 2 kids and I was 10 years younger. Ahhh. Now I’m lucky to get a Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner fixed for the 6 of us. What happened?!!!! An adoption and three more kids later, tragedy and heartache, stress and more stress happened. Trying to homeschool and love unconditionally through it all. Watching my faith and my patience being tried to the max and surviving one day at a time. Not exactly what I pictured when I got married, or had my first child, or started homescholing. Life happened.

I’m tired. To the bone tired. Worn out. Exhausted. You name, I feel it. My spirit is tired. My hope wanes. Joy is hard to find. I’m still stretched to the max. When we adopted and the kids were 11, 10, 7, 2, and 1 I didn’t think I could be more tired. I was so wrong! We were just beginning and didn’t know the suffering that would lie ahead. That my sister would pass away unexpectedly a short time later. I could still sleep at night! Lay my head down and wake up somewhat refreshed. What I wouldn’t give for just one night like that now. I feel tired beyond my 46 years. No amount of makeup can hide the circles under my eyes and the heartache of my soul. People tell me I’m a strong woman. I don’t think they can see inside my heart. To the woman I don’t like most days. To the place where all I have left is survival. And that has to be enough. Yet it doesn’t feel like enough.

Where did I get this image of what my life should be like? Kids gathered around the table eager to learn with good attitudes. Right. Nicely decorated, clean house where meals are made from scratch by loving hands. Ha. (Even though I do have pizza dough rising in the bread machine. Score one for me.) Creative children making crafts for Christmas presents with no supervision from me. Whoa. Christmas cards sent on time. (Almost happened this year.) Why do I always feel less than I am called to be because of this idea of perfection in my head? I know it’s there. It’s wrong. Why is this such a battle for me? Why can’t I rejoice over the major strides that M and S have made in the last 8 years, despite the tragedy of their older sister B? Why can’t I accept that the best I can do is help them become what God created them to be, not what I want them to be. Why is all this so hard? My head knows these things, but my heart just keeps telling me it’s not enough. Is that good? Is that the reason I’ve survived all the pain that has come these last 10 years? If I rest in good enough will I give up the battle for their hearts? Do I have the strength to continue this journey?

I am blessed. I know that. My family loves me in spite of myself. And sends me away for scrapbook weekends to rejuvenate and “find” my joy again. But it really lies in God. I know I’m far away. Talking to Him but not listening to what He has to say to His daughter. And life could be so much worse. I know that. My rest has to come in my relationship with God. So that is my early New Year’s resolution. To find rest in God. To know when what I have to offer is good enough and when I need to push harder. To find joy in the journey, in the little things. To be grateful for the life I have. To believe in miracles and not lose hope. And to find rest.

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Comments

  1. I came to thank you for encouraging me to day and low and behold I found you encouraged me in the midst of your own storm. You are so kind. (((((hugs)))) You are right. We will get through it. One day…one step at a time.

  2. Wow… you articulated so well what so many of us feel. God tells us many times in His Word to be still and know that He is God.
    So much easier said than done.

    Lord I pray for Marty. I ask that You would fill her with Your peace and rest. That You would renew her strength (in quietness and trust is our strength). That You, O God, would allow her to feel that joy that comes from You no matter what our circumstances are. Help her to set her standard and her schedule from You (from what’s on Your heart) – not an agenda of perfection.

    May the Lord show Himself strong in your life in 2009 like no other time. : )

    Bless you!

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  4. Honey I don’t have 5 kids! Only 1 at home. I am not super mom. Pinky swear. We just operate in 10 minute increments on a tight schedule. ;-) She falls in bed @ 7 and I’m usually right behind her.

    We don’t do all this stuff now. It’s just things we’ve done along the way for periods of time that we think has helped or have seen results. The things we do now just take a few minutes each. Thank goodness!

    J was extremely severe, like Ted Bundy severe, so I knew it was going to take LOTS of interventions.

    You are an amazing mom!!!

    I think you’re absolutely right about our kids. I think it will be very helpful and J really wants to help. Maybe we’re opening some new doors for our kids.

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