How McDonald’s saved us!
Here’s the dirty secret. When my kids were younger, I was pretty much a single mother as their father commuted to work 2 hours away. I was in Maine by myself with children that I nusred each one until at least they were two. It was overwhelming, and sometimes between being the soccer, gymnastics, lacrosse, dance, figure skating etc mom, I had to get drive-thru just to keep them alive.
I would love to tell you that that wasn’t so. That I had it all under control, that my life was this perfect picture of organisation and home cooked meals. No in those early days it was wildly chaotic, and I was in survival mode. I loved every minute of it, and I knew even when I was in it, that those were the best days of my life, but they were far from perfect.
I had to learn to embrace the clutter and chaos that was my life in order to enjoy my family. I had to accept that as organised a person as I am, that this was a different season, and be patient with myself and my family. I learned not to fight the chaos, but embrace the madness. Oh boy, was it crazy sometimes, but I couldn’t fight it every step of the way. I wasn’t’ completely in control, because let’s face it who is completely in control when their 3 year old has a monumental melt down? You want to hide from the shame of the chaos, but you know what? As you are beating yourself up about your failure as a mother, God is looking down at you and admiring you for the perfect mother he created you to be. I have always said that God knows who to send babies to. He gave me six precious gifts that I couldn’t be prouder of, and they have brought me immeasurable happiness. Through the grace of God I survived those early years.
Fast forward 10 years. My kids never eat fast food, I make all our food from scratch, however i don’t have a baby latched to my breast and life is a lot more orderly and calm now. However there are so many things that as a parent I wish I had done differently. I still wish I could remember what my 10 year old needs for special days at school, or that I could find matching pajamas for P.J day. Everyday I try to live my life with grace, and know that if today isn’t a great one, then guess what? I am blessed that tomorrow is a whole new day.
I also live with my life with a sense of humor. I love to laugh, and have no trouble laughing at myself or my own inadequacies. I have my fingers is so many pies. I am a single mother with still 4 children living at home. I run three different businesses. Life can get messy purely because it is so busy. I wish I could learn to say “yes”. People offer to help me all the time, and I so often decline their help. Foolish pride I guess. I feel like I should be able to do it all myself, and not share the burden.
My advice to you is that if you are struggling, don’t beat yourself up about it. It doesn’t make you less of a mother or a person. It makes you human. Know that this is only for a season. Try to find a new perspective on it, that there are other women out there that would give their eye teeth for your life, and here you are living someone else’s dream.