Sunday, October 12, 2008

Thanksgiving: a good time for reflections and meltdowns...not necessarily in that order

It is one of those days.
You wake up groaning because you suddenly have a sinus cold and you are acutely aware of the fact that you stayed up much too late last night cooking food for today's big dinner and should have gone to sleep instead so that you had the physical wherewithal to fight off the cold you will battle all day
You drag your sore self out of bed, you rush around getting four people ready for church while your husband grabs a shower and gets himself ready. You grumble, you complain. You say to yourself, "Just once I would like the luxury of getting only myself ready and YOU can get the kids ready. Just once." Which you know is a complete lie. You would like that to be the case more than once.
Your kids are dressed, diaper changed, breakfast eaten, hair is done and you venture into your closet to find something to wear. And then you realize you have nothing to wear. You pull down the basket of seasonal clothing because it has snowed and you realize that you cannot get away with one more Sunday in summer capris. You rifle through your seasonal clothes and see everything that you've worn for the last two years. You realize that the last time you went shopping for clothes was in a second hand store. Your mind floats to the images of the beautiful women at church. Women, who it would seem, have just stepped out of a catalogue. You try not to be envious as you think of a friend who has $70 high heel boots. You love this friend. And yet, all you can think of is, "Just once....just once, I'd like the luxury of being able to spend $70 on something other than groceries! Something on myself." Which is a lie, of course, because you really want it more than once.
So instead you take a deep breath, you try and tell yourself that your friend and her husband both work and have no kids. You have a different course that you are on. You are not willing to go into debt for clothes, you are living on a single income so that your kids can have you at home, you are being obedient to the things God wants you to do. But your heart betrays you and you find yourself still wanting those high-heeled hooker boots and a suede skirt, knit sweater and fitting accessories.
In frustration, you approach the mirror and realize that if you were any good with scissors you would chop off all your hair and give yourself a haircut that would somehow take away the dramatic reality of the dark bags under your eyes. You fiddle with your hair clip, and hairspray and swear to yourself that if paper bags placed over your head ever come into style you will champion their cause.
Checking the time you yell, with a voice far from meek, that in 10 minutes we're leaving whether anyone is in the car or not. You grab the vacuum and dramatically clean the carpets thinking, "Just once, just once, I would like it if I wasn't the only person who cared about how the house looked." Which, of course, is a lie because you'd like it to be more than once.
And as you miserably vacuum the floor--aware that you will have to wear running shoes with your outfit because you have no appropriate footwear (hooker boots included), that you look like you just came out of the laundry pile because you have had to get three children ready, that your hair is a possible example of a bad hair commercial--you ask yourself, "Why the bloody hell am I doing all this?"
And as you vacuum, you answer yourself, "Because it's Thanksgiving, and I want to celebrate it with my friends and family."
And then you stop. The vacuum hose falls to the floor as you cover your face and start to cry.
It's Thanksgiving. A day to be thankful. A day to count your blessings. A day to rejoice that your son isn't fighting in Afghanistan, that your husband has a job, that your children are healthy, that you have clothes to wear, a house to clean, a vacuum that works, food to have dinner with and friends and family to celebrate Thanksgiving with.
And you think to yourself, "Just once, just once, I'd like the luxury of not comparing myself, not complaining about my life, not focusing on myself."
And then you decide that that "once" is now. Today you will be thankful and be grateful to God for all His blessings. Today your whole heart will praise Him for His goodness and favour towards you. Today you will say "thank You".
And not just once.


Shaun and Holly said...

I loved this post. Thanks for being real.

It is a tiring stage in your life to be mommy to 3 (and one being a little baby). Fatigue rules and you really do always seem to be "last on the list".

I am happy that even in the midst of your struggles you were able to snap yourself out of it(fatigue, sadness, etc) and be thankful. Hugs!!

Imperfect said...

Hi! So glad you stopped by today. As for the blog design: if you scroll down to the bottom of my blog there is a link that says "Blog Design by Lena." It's kind of hard to see, but it's there I promise. Just click on it and find the free designs section. That's where I got it! Have a great day.

Amy said...

If it makes you feel any better, I never have Mike home on a Sunday a.m. (he either works or worship) so therefore 52 Sundays a year, I get myself and 3 kids ready...

You are more than welcome to compare yourself to me each won't be mad at all!

Try to does a body good!!

Shaun and Holly said...

I LOVE the new look of your BLOG!!

Jen said...

Blog looks great, and although you have already been told this way too many times...(I know, because every one of us at your stage, have been told this way too many times!!!)"this too shall pass..."I really don't mean to sound trite, but it really will.
Do the best you can in the mean time and don't be too hard on yourself...little ones are an absolute joy....but sometimes that Joy causes a mountain of WORK and nobody else seems to notice!!

Blessings on you for being able to be thankful in the middle of chaos!!!

Nadine said...

So well said. Being thankful for Him.

Tamatha said...

Oh how I have missed your blog. Now reading thru...catching up on things...I can't see how I managed without.:o) Love your way of writing...and living so real.