When You're Discouraged

 

Loveys, last week summer colds invaded our house. It was a long week of just me and the kids together. Jeff was working super hard to finish our deck (it's pretty much done. Hallelujah!). And I was taking care of kids who were feeling awful (mainly Lincoln--we ended up going to the doctor twice for this kid in one week!). We went through almost a whole bottle of hand sanitizer as I made everyone clean their hands approximately every fifteen minutes. It felt like a LONG week. Finally, over the weekend, we turned a corner and the kids started feeling much better. Thank heavens.

This morning, I woke up feeling sick.

I won't lie to you. I almost cried. After a week of taking care of kids, waking up and feeling like the cold has now reached me . . . well, it was discouraging. Because moms still have kids to take care of. Because there's still breakfast to make. Laundry to do. Bottles to feed and diapers to change. Jeff ran to the store before work and got me some cold medicine.

I just put Lily down for a nap. I finally made myself a cup of coffee. Both kids are playing in their rooms. And I sat down in my pajamas after deciding that, no, actually, I don't have the energy to clean up the loft.

And I just checked the clock to see if it's almost lunchtime, when Jeff will be back for an hour.

It's 10:07, lovey.

Okay.

I also have to admit that I'm sad that there are only two weeks before school starts. Two weeks! The summer has flown by and it's almost over. I've loved the easy summer schedule. I've loved hearing the kids play, and I've even loved feeding them snacks every twenty minutes. I'm the kind of mom who's okay with popsicles at 10 am. I'm okay with the kids playing dress up every day if they want. I'm okay with staying home and having pajama and cartoon days. I'm okay with play dough all over the kitchen table while Ashtyn makes pretend gourmet meals and Lincoln makes worms. I'm okay with many hours of Peppa Pig and bowls of buttery popcorn. Most of all, I'm okay with these kids of mine who have absolutely loved their summer. I'm okay with smiles and happy kids. And I'm totally okay with taking care of sniffly kids when they catch a summer cold.

This has been my first summer of not working outside the home. My first summer with the kids not in daycare at all. My first summer where I don't have projects always in the back of my mind. And it's been good for me.

I'm not really ready for the school schedule to take over our lives again. And the truth is that I want to enjoy every minute of the next two weeks, not feel sick and drained of energy.

But this is where I am. Definitely not 100 percent today.

We all have these days, you know, lovey. Not 100 percent. Moving and functioning because we have to, even if we're not feeling it. We all feel discouraged sometimes. Me too.

So today, some things I will let go of. Some things can wait until tomorrow. Some things can't wait. I will be strong enough to do those things because God gives us strength. I will give myself the same grace I give my kids when they're sick. Because we need it too. A little latitude. A shrug of the shoulders. It's going to be okay.

It's even okay to feel discouraged.

I've been working on that this summer. Letting us all feel whatever we're feeling. If Ashtyn feels sad, I've told her it's okay to feel sad. We all do sometimes. If Lincoln cries, that's okay. We all cry sometimes. I want the freedom to feel how I'm feeling. My kids need that freedom too.

So today I'm a little discouraged. I want to feel stronger. I hope the medicine heads off this cold. But regardless, we keep going because people need us. And that's a blessing in itself. I can't even imagine a life where I didn't have a husband who needs me. Or kids who need me. I can't imagine this house without the sounds of Ashtyn and Lincoln and Lillian. I can't imagine a life without Jeff next to me. We work for this happy, loving home and family. They're worth it. I'm worth it. He's worth it. It's a good life.

So today, I'm thinking I'll be wearing this old Third Day sweatshirt all day long. I'm pretty sure the loft won't get organized until later tonight. There's French beef stew in the crockpot making the house smell wonderful and comforting, and reassuring me that dinner will be easy and ready tonight. I'm not even going to argue with myself about that second cup of coffee I'm about to have. 

Grace on my kids. Grace on me. Grace on Jeff.

Lincoln just climbed up on the couch next to me, tucked his feet under me, and asked me, "Do you love me, Mommy?"

Good grief, kid. Only to the point of obsession.





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