I've sometimes wondered if perhaps I'm just a little lazy. Have you ever had this thought? In the past eight years of motherhood, I've wondered "surely I could get more done around here if I had more energy, worked harder, put more into it..."
And yet, as mothers often feel, there doesn't always seem to be a ton at the end of the day to put on display in spite of all our efforts.
If it sounds strange to you that I feel this way, it's due to the power of the blogosphere, which gives a slightly slanted view of my life. This magical blogging wand waved over me tells you that
- Jamie writes and edits two blogs
- She's written two books in the past five years, with another on the way
- She makes maple syrup, bakes with her kids, homeschools them, and lives a picturesque life.
All those things are true, and yet. What I've found out is that it doesn't matter if you accomplish much or little, that voice in our head will tell you it is NOT ENOUGH.
Last week I was away from my family for five entire days, something I've only ever done once before. There was no laundry to do, no children to care for, no meals to make. My only obligation was to show up for the (fabulous) meals that were served, and to write.
Ah-ha--here was a perfect chance to test once and for all and see if I really am lazy deep-down. Nobody was there to lord over me; there were no deadlines to meet, no real urgency to my work. Only a few thoughts written down on paper and me, myself.
In theory, I could easily have spent the time mostly in bed, reading novels, taking naps, and watching Netflix.
But I didn't! Well, I did all of those things (in moderation), but I did so much else besides. I found myself wanting to write, to research, to edit, to do what I had come there to do. I found that I had plenty of time to do that, as well as take a nap, take a walk, eat good food, and read good books. In fact, I even found myself not completely exhausted by 7:30 most nights!
My point in mentioning this isn't to pat myself on the back about all that I accomplished, but to tell you my takeaway that applies to you as well:
Moms work really, really hard. Without a lot to show for it.
We're not lazy, mamas, just because we can't bulletpoint and categorize our work at the end of the day. In fact we're investing in the unseen, the spirits and souls of our children. And that work is of world-changing importance. So let's keep doing it.
"To nourish children and raise them against odds is any time, any place,
more valuable than to fix bolts in cars or design nuclear weapons."
~ Marilyn French