Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Struggling to do all of the Juggling

Last night, I read this latest blog from Clover Lane...Questions to Ask Ourselves.  The perspective focuses on looking for the simplicity in life and asking ourselves the hard questions of what really matters and sloughing off the things that don't matter.  This phrase struck me to my core...struggling with the juggling.

How many times as mothers, or people for that matter, in this crazy, hectic world do we struggle to be a master juggler?  So many times throughout a day, I switch roles in order to fulfill the needs of all of those around me.  It gets stressful, overwhelming, and hard.  But, there is no one that tells me that I have to do all of the things that I do.  I do it to myself.  I put the stress upon myself, and I have never been a happier person. 

After reading the blog post last night over at Clover Lane, I really sat and thought about my personal know, where I am and how I got here.  Let me share a bit with you. 

When we were living in Memphis, I was a worker bee.  I thought that I could do it all.  I imagined I could have a family and a career and get it all done and please everyone.  As our family grew, I quickly realized that I could not meet all the deadlines and definitely couldn't please all of the people all of the time.  So, I tried stepping back from parenting for a bit to focus on my job of teaching the students in my classroom.  Then, I would realize that the little people in my home were struggling, so I would try to step back from the job and focus upon my parenting.  It was so very hard to juggle the two.

So, after some time, I stepped out of teaching.  I decided to try my hand at solely parenting.  It was a very hard step to take.  I had some major identity issues for a while.  Then, The Committee took a job out of Memphis and we moved to a rural area outside of Nashville.  After analyzing where we were as a couple and family, we decided to lay down some parameters of our roles in our world.  The Committee would step out to work every day doing the best he could in that arena, and I would commit my all to running our home and raising our children. 

Live simply. Love generously.
Care deeply. Speak kindly.
Leave the rest to God.
~ Ronald Reagan

I felt so 1950's-ish establishing these rules in my head and in my home.  I felt a little like Mrs. Cleaver, yet so not her because I am in no way organized.  I have given it my all, and I have truly never been happier in my life.  I know what my job is each day.  I only have to please my family and trust that I'm doing exactly what I am supposed to do. 

I am telling you this, because I want to emphasize that this was a very intentional decision by The Committee and me.  It didn't just occur one day.  We had "the talk" and decided that this is what was best for us.  We truly work together to share in the progress for our family.  It wasn't always an easy journey to get to this place.  We struggled along the way a great deal.  We have hit some bumpy patches along our way, for sure.  I was always torn about my role in our family and in this world.  But, now I am at great peace about my role. 

We are very blessed to have been able to make this choice.  We have been given blessings in all forms to allow us this peace.  Please don't get me wrong and think that we live a life of luxury at all times.  There are many times that we go without in our little world.  There are many trade-offs in our life.  We haven't taken a family trip in over 3 years, and my children have not ever seen the beach.  But, they are picked up everyday in carpool by their mama.  We don't have the latest and greatest toys.  But, they are able to run wild in a rural area each afternoon living in a world of make-believe.  We live paycheck to paycheck, being as frugal as possible, and we are all the better for it.  We don't paint the town red very often.  However, we fling open our doors, invite friends over every chance we get, and have an old-fashioned bonfire and cook-out.  These are all moments we won't forget and have been intentionally chosen by my husband and me as parents.   

If you are just tuning in, let me give you the CliffNotes version of this post...we have chosen to be intentional in living our life.  We wanted to simplify everything to make a better world for our family.  We want to live simply, and our little group has never been happier in our life.  We give many thanks for our blessings and pray that we will continue to do what is right for our family and all of those that have been graciously placed in our world. 

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