Now I want you to look back over what I've described and feel for a moment the love of a million other women who have empathy for you because they have been there too, you are not alone. We all have a lot of things we should be doing. Or that we think we should be doing.
The word "should" is so tricky. It carries a lot of weight. If you read my entry titled "Happiness is acceptance" you will have realized the power of this little word already and the effect it has on how we feel about our surrounding circumstances. Without being too redundant I am going to re-visit this word again, only within a new context, this time we are going to talk about its direct reference to YOU.
Okay real quick, right now I want you to get out a piece of paper and pencil, at the top of the paper write:
"THINGS I SHOULD BE DOING AS A WIFE AND MOTHER"
This is just a list ladies, you make them everyday when you grocery shop or plan your day, you can do this-it will take five minutes, okay...Go...
Don't come back till you finish your list.
I mean it.
Okay, done? Here's what my list looked like:
THINGS I SHOULD BE DOING AS A WIFE AND MOTHER
Keep my house tidy and organized
Do a load of laundry daily
Never go to sleep without the dishes done
Provide healthy food for my family
Take time out to play with Scotty every day
Make notes and gifts for Josh's next deployment
Finish my design course
Practice my music daily
Finish the baby gift I'm making for Ashley
Pick up my art room
Have a learning activity for Scotty every day
Have music time with Scotty
Pick up the office
Read scriptures and pray daily
Family night each Monday
Decorate my home
Be a supportive wife for my husband
I'm sure your list was just as overwhelming. Now I'm going to show you a trick that will take that feeling of inadequacy and turn it into empowerment. Are you ready? Because your life is about to change-you are never going to look at a to-do list the same, or think of your role as a home-maker the same. This is drastic. This is powerful, I just want you to be prepared.
Go back to the top of your list, cross out the word "Should" from your title, and over it I want you to write the word "COULD". Now your list will read: "Things I COULD be doing as a wife and mother".
Do you feel the difference! You are no longer obligated to be any of these things! You are CHOOSING what you want to do and in that agency there is POWER! There is FREEDOM! There is JOY! We all have a list of ideals, but instead of becoming a slave to that list, just let it be a selection of possibilities. I never want this blog to become another impossible ideal for you-I want it to present possibilities and support.
Even as I write this my toddler is hitting my back and pulling at my arm to get my attention, I have a load of laundry waiting to go in the dryer, and another load on my bed waiting to be folded, I have no idea the next time I'm going to see my husband, tomorrow night? Monday-I'm just waiting for a call- I'm a mom just like you, and I feel the weight of the ominous "Should" just like you. When it comes to things outside of our control let the should be, but as far as what WE should be-give it up and choose what you could be instead.
Well, at this point I could keep writing till I come up with a clever note to end on, or I could put a diaper on my child who is running around like Tarzan....I choose the latter!
Until next time!