Oh sweet goodness. This spunky little thing might just be the end of me.
Like the Hokies jersey/multiple unnecessary bandaid get-up? That, my friends, is the look of a child whose mother is carefully choosing battles these days. Because when it takes fifteen minutes (and the help of my four year old) to wrestle a pull-up on the girl at night, some other things just aren’t worth it.
After a failed attempt of bringing the kids (sans Matt) to a beautiful engagement party last night (what in the heck was I thinking??), I felt completely defeated as I loaded two crying kids into the minivan. Almost instinctively, I called my mom and soon found myself sobbing as I narrated the difficulties of the past few weeks. I reminded her of Mary Grace’s boundless energy and unbelievably strong will. How her voice has been hoarse for the past week from her sheer volume. I acknowledged my embarrassment over her meltdown at the party. And my mom listened.
She then reassured me that, despite what I was feeling in that moment, I was not a complete failure as a mom. That an unfortunate string of fussiness and disobedience was not a reflection on my mothering. That this too shall pass.
Later that evening, as the Bedtime War raged on, I found myself sitting outside of Mary Grace’s door crying out to the Lord for wisdom and help. And, let’s be real… begging for rest. As I prayed, I was hit hard with my own sin here. So much of my frustration that evening had revolved around me. On my identity as a mother. Which is exactly why I was so shaken up by an hour of my kids’ misbehavior on display for an entire party of well-groomed adults to see. So much of my identity has been wrapped up in how well I performed as a mother. How pristine my kids looked. How well-mannered they were. How impeccable their behavior.
This is old hat to me. Identity has been something I have wrestled with for quite some time. I wrote about it here and here and here. You see? I’m as hard headed and slow to learn as they come. As I did last night, I have fallen hard so many times for the lie that my worth flows from my accomplishments and accolades. I am just grateful that I have a Father who loves me and accepts me unconditionally, despite my own tantrums and screw-ups. That, at the end of the day, I can rest in my identity as His beloved daughter.
I did finally get a good night sleep last night in case you were wondering… until Carson woke us with his screams of, “mommmy!! I threw up all over my bed!” But, hey, that’s motherhood I suppose.
I’m still learning, y’all. Bear with me…