Thursday, January 18, 2007

9:33 a.m.

That’s what time it was as I plopped a load of clean clothes on my bed, unfolded, and declared this day a failure. Beating myself up for leaving the laundry, I moved on to dry my hair before the baby woke up from his nap. After all, I reasoned, if I don’t dry my hair now, it will look funny all day. My dishwasher is half-unloaded for a similar reason—the baby needed to go down for his nap, and I needed to quick grab my shower before he woke up again. It’s all perfectly reasonable, but all of these half-finished tasks scream out at me: Failure! Failure!

So, at 9:33 I admitted defeat. I am a failure. Absolutely hopeless. And the problem extends beyond household chores. I’ve also been an inconsistent parent, telling the noisy boys they could watch just one show and then they needed to turn the TV off, only to give in to their plea of “Please, Mom, just one more?” I’ve been a lousy Christian, thinking terrible thoughts about someone during my morning devotions. (Ironically, while reading the story of the ungrateful servant who had been forgiven a huge debt, only to turn around and have someone arrested for a much smaller, unpaid debt.) I’ve been lazy—just one more cup of coffee and the front page of the newspaper. After all, when’s the last time I allowed myself that luxury? I’ve yelled at my children. (Bopping a balloon around the kitchen while Mom is cooking eggs is generally a bad idea, but not an excuse to lose my temper.)

The list of failures continues. And yet…yet…it’s only 9:33 in the morning. Surely all is not lost. After all, the list of what I have accomplished is also long: devotions, breakfast for the kids and myself, a load of laundry (albeit unfolded), Valentine’s for the noisy boys’ friends ordered, bathroom cleaned, hotel booked for an upcoming Mom’s conference, an email to a discouraged friend, prayers for another friend undergoing surgery today, diapers changed, bottles made, the baby’s down for a nap, and I’m showered and dressed.

Why do I expect perfection from myself? I’ll keep plugging away today, no doubt finishing some tasks and leaving others. I’ll do my best to love my kids and create a safe and happy home for them. I’ll take them to the library and make chili for supper. I’ll cut up apples and pears for snacks, change more diapers, and play a few rounds of Whac-a-Mole. And, no doubt, I’ll make a few more mistakes along the way.

Can I be okay with “good enough” today? Can I accept my own limitations and rely on God for guidance and strength? Can I surrender my goal of “supermom” and exchange it for my true identity: a woman in need of grace?

7 comments:

For now... said...

My clock on my computer says 11:33, is it any better over there? If not, don't worry, bopping a ballon around the kitchen while cooking eggs is a fire hazard!

A Musing Mom said...

It's 2:33pm. No laundry done. Fish is dead. But I found Christmas letterhead at OfficeMax for $1.50 so all is not lost. It's just a matter of perspective (which does seem to get lost for us moms as often as socks in the laundry, doesn't it?).
AMM

Llama Momma said...

Thanks for the encouragement, ladies! I'm happy to report that my day (and my attitude) has improved. Funny, once I let go of "perfect" I find much more joy in life!

The chili's cooking, the baby's napping, and the noisy boys have painted an entire gallery of Sponge Bob Squarepants characters.

Kingdom Advancer said...

Hey Llama Momma,
Thanks for reading my blog again (the post on racism). However, that's not what this comment is about. Rather:

I wanted to let you and your readers know about an urgent situation in the entertainment industry. It's a situation which needs to be talked about, prayed for, and acted upon.

This is the link to the article I wrote about it:

http://kingdomadvancing.blogspot.com/2007/01/wrong-in-so-many-ways.html

If you could make a short post linking to this article, or write your own article about it, that would be great. Just make sure that you realize that this is not about making my blog more popular. That's not what I'm doing. It's just that God has really put this issue heavy on my heart.

Llama Momma said...

KA -- I'll check it out!

L.L. Barkat said...

You get up by 9:33? I'm in awe.

Llama Momma said...

Okay, LL, what time do YOU get up? Now I'm curious! How do you have time to do all of this blogging, write a book, and grow carrot tops to boot...PLUS sleep in?? I must be doing something wrong! ;-)