Books, Faith

Nothing Extra

I’ve been struggling, you guys know that! I use this space to be REAL with my ugly thoughts. It helps me to get all my yuck out and I hope it helps other people to know that they aren’t the only ones who don’t wake up and poop out rainbows. I think it’s important to be real and it’s the only way I know, really.

After I published my last blog post, a woman contacted me. She has been a reader for a few years. In fact, she is the first stranger to ever approach me and say she read my blog. I was so surprised when she said she read my blog and liked it. This woman wasn’t like me. She was HOLY. She was polished and sweet. She is one of those people who seems to have it all together, ALL the time. She is the mom with the big, perfectly behaved family at mass. She is always smiling and she is soft spoken. After my last blog post, she came over and we just visited and it was SO nice to get some perspective.

She is in a different season of life now. She doesn’t have babies at home any more and some of her oldest children have gotten married and started their own families. For two hours we sat at my dining room table and talked about life. I asked her questions like “ok, so, let’s get real, are you just so holy that when you found out you were pregnant with #7 you just broke into a prayer of thanksgiving?” I was happy to hear that things in her life weren’t always perfect. I was happy to hear that NFP wasn’t always easy for her. I was happy to hear that this woman (who seems absolutely spotless on the outside) had some smudges on the inside.

She slipped me a book at the end of the visit. A book called Holiness for Housewives (and Other Working Women).

A few weeks ago another reader sent me a book with a note attached. She said my Dane reminded her of her precious daughter and she thought I would enjoy the book (Giddy up, Eunice).

Anyway, what’s the point of this post? The point is that we belong to each other. The point is that what we say and do to and for those we know (and barely know) matters. It blows my ever lovin’ mind how little it takes to make a difference in someone’s day. These two women gave of themselves–one through her time and wisdom and the other through a gift she thought I would enjoy.

And these two women aren’t the only ones. I have friends, y’all. Reeeeeal friends. Friends who take time out of their work day to help me figure out how to decorate my house. Friends who text me “how are you?” not just as an opening to a more important conversation, but as an actual question–they actually want to know how I am. Friends who take over the “pinterest mom” projects at my daughter’s school because they know I hate it (and suck at it). Friends who feel comfortable and safe enough to vent about their rough day (or week).

And so, at this very moment, I am blissfully happy. I am happy because people have shown themselves to me and have allowed me to show myself to them. I am happy because we moved to a bigger house (yay!). I am happy because I have 3 healthy children and have had a healthy pregnancy with Vallette baby #4. I am happy because my husband makes enough money to support us. I am happy because Dane is going through a developmental leap and we have had a CONVERSATION. (An awesome conversation about what he did at school and how he ate “all duh apple”. I’ve waited a really long time for that moment and it was well worth the wait.) But, most of all, I’m happy because (with the help of the women I spoke about earlier) I have learned something. I’ve learned a lesson that I’ve learned many, many times before (and have since forgotten and will likely forget again). I’ve learned that God is not asking me to do extra.

He doesn’t want more of me than I am capable of giving. He doesn’t wish I had one hour a day of alone time to spend with Him. He doesn’t wish I could go to adoration everyday. He doesn’t wish those things because that’s not what He’s called me to right now. He’s called me to motherhood and, man, motherhood is messy. It’s messy and loud and affords little to no time for quiet reflection. He’s called me to pregnancy which leaves me exhausted and moody. He’s calling me to MY life, not the life of a cloistered nun.

So, today I will live the life that God is calling me to (and not the one I sometimes imagine He really wants me to live: a life of silence and adoration and contemplative prayer). I will live my big, tired, moody, loud, messy life with a smile on my face and a prayer in my heart because that’s all I have the space for right now-quick little heart prayers. And, for Him, that’s enough. I am enough. My life is enough. And, if it works for Him, then it needs to work for me, too.

 

3 thoughts on “Nothing Extra”

  1. AMEN AND AMEN!!!!! Ive always prayed for you to have this realization. Thank you Jesus. Love and miss you on Ruby Lane ❤❤❤

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