I stand by the name “The Crazy In My House” not because there’s serious, uncontrollable chaos in my home, but because there’s light hearted, semi-controlled, memory-making chaos in my home-most typically when my husband’s home. I assure you he’s the funny one, the “good” parent, and just another kid in a grown man’s body (that’s not a dig at his character-rather a compliment at his ability to play with K in ways that don’t even cross my “we-have-so-many-THINGS-to-do-today-using-our-imagination-is-not-one-of-them” noggin.
That being said, I’m still pregnant-very pregnant-nearing 34 weeks, actually. 44 days from my due date and we’re mostly unprepared, logistically speaking. The reality of the “crazy” in our home is simply that I tend to be a SAHM (stay at home mom) with no structure and live haphazardly. Laundry gets done, eventually. Floors are vacuumed, occasionally. Meals are cooked, though lacking in their former foodie excellence. The reality of our situation is that we’ve made and seen a shift in so many areas of our life that it only makes sense for the tone of the blog to go right along with it.
Significant changes have happened on the Spiritual front for both Chris and I in the past several weeks that my convictions of not only living in and for the world as well as being strongly convicted of my lack of fear of God all seem to put more action into my professed faith. I have a passion when it comes to writing, though one could make the case that I severely lack the ability to be concise, and if the majority of my focus is on how much weight I’ve gained carrying my son and what epic meals I create for mi familia then where does the glory to God go? There’s a balance to enjoying my life and interests that has been significantly skewed to the “what makes Elizabeth happy” end of the spectrum that taking those desires and using them to the best of my ability to return the glory to God seems both fitting and necessary.
Let’s begin with some truth. Some of my truth. We’ll aim low and start with one for today.
Confession 1: Um. This parenting thing. SO not what I thought.
I spent 5 1/2 years of my life “learning” to be a Social Worker. I’d be hard pressed to say that the benefit of any 50 minute class that met three times a week taught me more than one 50 minute interaction with anyone in my professional career. Either way, however, I was being trained and equipped in theory, logistics, case studies, physical restraints, mid terms, finals, meetings (some ending in tears on my part because I’m a Sensitive Sally), and the like to be able to “successfully” encourage and assist someone in need.
My own child, however, is an entirely different story. Her pediatrician has recommended we ask her to be tested in a public school setting for an advanced Pre K curriculum given her physical, social, and cognitive abilities so I’m clearly not doing anything wrong per se, but the thoughts I had of what raising a toddler was like line up nowhere with my reality.If I had a dollar for every chore chart, cleaning schedule, home school curriculum, and the like I’d probably only have $10, but you catch my drift, yes? My follow through is minimal in many areas and despite my good intentions I just can’t seem to follow a schedule of any kind. I see rules as grey area-convenient when it works and an annoyance when other more “pressing” matters arise.
Though I try hard to let my “yes” be “yes” and my “no” be “no” (Matthew 5:37) when it comes to play groups, church commitments, contributions to various events, and other areas of service. At home it’s anything goes. The way I steward my time fluctuates greatly and typically at the expense of my kiddo. Having it together enough to consistently sit down and do a school lesson, particularly one that involves dry erase markers or paint, takes a significant amount of discipline that I lack. Reading my Bible with K in the morning is a great idea in theory and allows me to read more in depth on the things she enjoys, which right now is Jonah and the Whale. On repeat. Several times a day. Frankly, Mama is tired of that whale. Were it not for my desire to be Biblically consistent in what I teach her, Jonah is about four seconds away from going to Nineveh in the first place (because I want my kid to always listen to God and her parents the first time, of course!) and the whale somehow ending up on Whale Wars (because we don’t kill big fish for fun. Just small fish. Or big-ish ones with Daddy in the ocean simply for eating the delicious food they provide.)
If my kid can excel in so many areas regardless of my apparent apathy, then I’m kicking myself for not challenging her enough at home and meeting her academically where she’s at. Thankfully grace abounds (Romans 5:20). In an effort not to take advantage of the Grace System, I’d say it’s safe to assume there’s a consistent lesson God’s presenting me with in terms of how my life’s currently structured and my consistent disobedience to continue on as I have without change raises in me the reality that what I’m being called to do is so outside my character, desire, and natural wiring. I come to the end of myself quickly and my reliance on God comes usually within an hour of K waking up. Though my natural inclination is to continue professionally as a Social Worker my reality is right now I’m called to be a mother before I can speak with much authority on any topic.
The marvelous thing about all of this is the difference between conviction and condemnation.
–Isaiah 30:18, “Therefore the LORD longs to be gracious to you, And therefore He waits on high to have compassion on you. For the LORD is a God of justice; How blessed are all those who long for Him.” (NASB)
As long as I remain fully aware that I constantly am given more than I can handle alone but nothing is out of God’s control then I’ll allow myself to accept the reality that I’ll never parent correctly but regardless of my failures in the midst of walking more intimately with Christ the journey can be filled with less inconsistency, less asking for forgiveness, and more relishing in the treasure that truly is the crazy in my house.