November 19, 2013

The Woman Who Must Be Everything

I'm a mother. I'm a writer, a homemaker, a Christian, and a homeschooler. I'm expected to keep the house clean and the kids alive. (And I need to look gorgeous while doing it. This includes all the hygiene and grooming and exercising.) I cook meals, change diapers, write novels, teach Sunday school, take my kids on field trips...but not all at once.
I WANTED to plant a garden this Fall.
There are a lot of expectations for me, not just as a mother, but also because I've taken on a number of other roles. I put most of these expectations on myself. I choose to be a mother and a Christian. These things are important to me and I would never give these roles up for anything. The writing and homemaking: also important. I feel homeschool is good for my family right now. All of this is time-consuming, but I CHOSE this. And I can DO this.

But not all at once.

It seems like there's always someone with a cleaner house. There's always someone who teaches these awesome lessons with visuals and related activities and crafts. And then I look at the woman who can cook healthy, delicious meals on a budget.

I can do those things. Honest. Just not at the same time.

See, I've realized that I work in phases. I'll be a good homemaker for a few months days, and then the house falls to pot while I focus on my writing. When I run 5 days a week, my writing stalls out. When I'm focused on buying lots of fruits & veggies and working them into meals (that my kids will actually eat), the running takes a back seat. I see where I'm lacking and jump in, head-first, to fix it.

the "Homemade Gifts" Christmas project
Huge time suck, but a creative outlet
And this is SO frustrating.

Seriously. It'll be late at night and the kids are in bed. There's too much on my to-do list and I'm exhausted. And I find myself asking why I can't have a clean home and cook healthy meals and homeschool my kindergartner, take care of my other two kids and serve in church, be a good mom, exercise every day and write novels.

And then I laugh at myself. Because that's not realistic. AT ALL. I mean, just reading over that list, it's crazy, right?

Homeschool schedule
 (that was tweaked a few times after this was taken)
Why would anyone expect one person to do all that? (And I'm the only person who puts this pressure on me. It's not coming from anyone else.) What kind of world do we live in where a person feels guilty about not being superhuman?

Oh, yeah. I have books.
So I've decided to do the best I can. I mean, that's what I've BEEN doing, technically. But now it'll be okay to not be great at everything. There needs to be a balance. There needs to be moderation in all these things. (What a concept!)

My potty training techniques
are highly sophisticated.
So, whatever you're struggling with, you should know that you're not alone. (Because I'm pretty sure I'm not the only person who feels like this.) There has to be a better way. And I'm going to find it.

  Here's to moderation.


Rebecca D. Dillon said...

Thanks for commenting on my blog. I'm so glad you found me and I you. I can totally relate to trying to wear too many hats and running out of time to do everything you want. Your books sound fabulous and I'll be buying one to give it a go during my week and a half off over the holidays. Enjoy your upcoming weekend.

Unknown said...

Thank you so much! Enjoy the time off. :)

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