I was frustrated. My daughter rolled her eyes when I told her to do something she wanted me to do for her. Chief had a beef with several things that had fallen through the cracks. My marketing firm gave me an ultimatum. And I was living in a constant state of frustration, doing poorly in every area of my out-of-balance life.
Yet I trudged on. It felt like each day I pulled around a heavy ball and chain, and couldn’t get my act together. Nothing was working right. I couldn’t cross off items on my list to save my life!
Have you ever been there? Where you have a to do list as long as your arm, and at the end of each day, it’s a longer list than you started with? Yeah, me.
Then came Sunday.
I had one of those deeper, come to an understanding conversations with Chief. And suddenly it all came clear. I was involved in too many things. I’d chosen to sign up for too many good causes, and everyone around me was suffering because of it. I was suffering, too.
I made the choice to withdraw from the chaplaincy. Yep, I only had a small amount of hours to complete. Yep, I loved it. Yep, I didn’t want to step away. But when it came down to it, it was the well-being of my family, or the chaplaincy. No contest.
What finally stopped me in my tracks was when Chief mentioned the one year we have left with our 16-year-old. She will be the kid that packs up and heads for college near the beach, coming home for Christmas and spring break. Oof.
Since I resigned from the chaplaincy (just a few days ago), every day is a new day of relief. More opportunities showed themselves: opportunities for relationship, opportunities to serve my family, and opportunities for contentment. The frustration level has decreased. I even exercised the last couple of days. And it feels great.
It’s about timing. We as women have so many choices and seasons, we are very capable. I thought this season was more about my career, as the kids are getting older. They don’t need me like they used to. But they still need me.
I don’t change diapers or pick up toys or help with homework anymore. But I do take phone calls and I do drive my younger two to events, and I need to remind my 13-year-old to wear sunscreen. I don’t stay up nights praying away monsters under the bed, but I do comfort my adult kids when they’ve had a bad day – at midnight, usually. I also wake up in the night praying for my son who doesn’t live with us anymore, but I know he may be sleepless with his chronic nightmares.
The kids are older, but I am still the heart of our home. And the choices I make with my time have a ripple effect on Chief and the four that God blessed us with. And for now, in this time, my availability for them is the most important choice I can make.
Victoria Newman - "A CHiP on My Shoulder" June 28th, 2013
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