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Sunday, May 29, 2011

I am not.

Here is the thing about get the end. You get the lesson. You get me.... but courtesy of self reflection and perspective. Often the simple act of pouring out my life through this keyboard helps that to occur.

But that is not my intention today. Right now I sit, still frustrated. Before perspective, before I have learned the lesson, before I can embrace the circumstances.

I had this great week. It was the busiest week I have had in a long time and I like busy. I felt like me a lot this week. Comfortable in my own skin. Less alien. Less lost. Less adrift.

Elisha graduated from Kindergarden. We picnicked at his school to celebrate an amazing year for him. We thanked his teacher and did my best to convey what a blessing she has been to us. I spent time with a friend I haven't spent enough time with lately. It wasn't the easiest conversation ever but there was understanding and grace exchanged. And forward motion. I stepped into a creative role in the church we are courting. And I stopped hiding and met some people. I went out with a girlfriend and we caught up on stuff we hadn't had time to communicate....reminded that there is more to life then the essentials. The first day of summer was spent with my kid's pseudo-cousins. And even if there was frustration at tears and strong wills, there was comfort in knowing that is the essence of sharing life...standing in the gap for each other. We had dinner with the people God seems to be giving us as spiritual leaders for this season. And it was fuhreakin awesome. We talked for three hours straight. And not the small chitchat that I can't seem to master. But three solid hours of where we have been and what God has taught us through over a dozen years of ministry. Big questions. And vision. And ideals. And passion. And I was reminded that under all the scabs and scars created living this life, there is still that which can not be manufactured- vision, ideals, and passion... for a community lived out in faith. Thursday morning I met a friend for a playdate. It's a young friendship, which frankly feels risky given my recent record on the issue. But a gamble I am taking... no matter the effort required to quiet the screaming in my head.

And then our baby turned four. Four years ago there was trauma and heartache at having her cut out of my belly two months early and before either of us was ready. But most days since have been filled with this unexpected joy as a result of her contagious belly laughter and giant blue eyes. So the highlight of the week was celebrating her. In her grandma's backyard, we gathered our extended family and enjoyed the evening. We honored Kaya and all that she brings to our life with cupcakes, flower shaped sandwiches, and special decorations made just for her. It was sweet and simple.

The weekend thus far has been filled with friends and yummy food. I even won mexican train last night. Which has never happened!

And this morning church was awesome. My little creative toe-dipping was evident to at least me. And that is enough.

But then we come home. I am making lunch in a messy kitchen. And the frustration caused by my lack of domestic skills erupts. It's everywhere and everyone is covered in the fallout.

And here is the part that still doesn't sit well...that I can't make peace with...that just sucks:

It doesn't matter how creative, or thoughtful, or passionate I am. I am never going to be good at this. The endless pile of dishes and laundry will always taunt me, reduce me to tears and frustration. It doesn't matter how amazing the enchiladas are that I make for dinner, there will always be a bleep, bleep, bleeping  pan that I can't seem to wash fast/good enough.

The whole week...all those things that I felt accomplished....and just good at..... well they don't matter when they come at the cost of the basics of my job. Wife. Mother.

And plenty of you reading this will say that nobody enjoys those things or is good at them. And you would be wrong. I know because my husband was raised by women whose sinks sparkle and their graduated mixing bowls are stored neatly together. They are homemakers. They make things run smoothly, providing this effortless existence for those they love. And I am not. And I don't.

As I stood washing what felt like every freaking dish in the house, tears mixed with the dishwater. Frustration, yes. Disappointment at my mistaken sense of accomplishment. And anger at my lack of humility...still.


  1. All I can muster is, "Yeah". This put such a heaviness in my chest because I totally get it. And feel it. And live it.

    I think I'm good at being the Mommy and I love being a woman, but this is the one area that I think men have it so much easier. They go to work, do their jobs and they are accomplished. I don't think my husband has ever felt his daily success was defined by dishes. Even if he is the one who does them most often, I think the emotional weight of running the house falls on me.

  2. I stay at home and I can tell you, my house is rarely sparkling clean. I try, but I give up because I live with messy people.

  3. amen and amen. i've always felt this way. this too does pass. i do think women who are good at it devote more time and energy to it. it's vicious to be hypercritical of yourself in this way. who says what is fast enough anyway. i devote more time to what i'm more skilled at doing. btw - i just don't have my parents stay at my house when they visit anymore if they're not going to be comfortable anyway... k.o.