Maybe you’re like me and you’re
super very really slightly exhausted this holiday season. You might not be in the throes of multiple feeding sessions each night with a newborn. Or the seemingly constant juggling act that is a toddler. But I know life must overwhelm you, too. Or maybe consume is a more appropriate term.
As moms, no matter the age or demand of our children, we are, simply put, consumed.
There is the steady stream of thoughts, hopes, doubts, dreams, fears, questions, decisions, and more doubts that fill our minds every waking moment of every single day. And, if I’m being completely honest, my brain just gets tired.
Because of this perpetual state of exhaustion, it can oftentimes feel like I am simply existing rather than thriving. I don’t want to just exist anymore, though, so I’m asking for three gifts this holiday season that I believe have the potential to transform the coming year.
Gift One: Peace
When my son is happy but screaming at the top of his lungs because he’s two, and that’s just what two-year-olds do. When my newborn cries, and I’ve tried E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G to soothe him. When the argument doesn’t seem to have resolution. When the car breaks down. When the heater goes out in the dead of winter. When there’s betrayal and heartbreak. When there’s that less-than-ideal report from the doctor. When the teacher e-mails about poor behavior yet again. When there’s nothing big, but the small things are suffocating.
Gift Two: Contentment
With my home. With my car. With my clothes. With my body. With my roles as a wife and mother. With my dirty floors and smudged windows. With marriages that aren’t quite like that romantic movie. With friendships that discourage more than encourage. With children that don’t listen, care, or respect. With a job that is tedious and unfulfilling. With life, when it’s not the fairy tale it was supposed to be.
Gift Three: Grace
For my son, when he smacks his brother right in the face. For my husband, when he forgets to put a new trash bag in the can after taking it out (pet peeve, anyone?). For the woman at the grocery store, who didn’t return my smile. For the grumpy man behind the register. For the little girl who hit my son on the playground. And for the parent who didn’t do a darn thing about it.
And, most importantly, grace for myself when I feel like a complete failure.
In the moments when I feel lost. In the moments when I discipline my son out of frustration rather than from a place of love. In the moments when I feel that I’ve given so much of myself that there’s nothing left to give. In the moments when the house is a disaster, but I can’t muster the energy to do anything about it.
Grace in all things, for all people, at all times. This is the gift that I believe has the greatest potential to positively impact my life, and it is the gift that my family and friends most deserve.
These Gifts Are Already Mine
It is in this moment that I’ll remind myself, as I’ve done many times before, that I’ve actually already received every single one of these gifts. I don’t need them; they’re already mine. They may bury themselves down deep inside sometimes, but they’re there. So it seems it’s time that I become intentional, time that I dust off these gifts and put them to good use.
And I hope you’ll do the same, Mama, because if we start raising our kids with hearts full of peace, contentment and grace, we just might change the world.