“Just because I find summer holidays difficult, it doesn’t mean I’m a bad mom.”
This has been my mantra for the past couple months of juggling three kids home from school, a busy work schedule, self-induced pressure to have fun and make meaningful memories, a lousy back that got thrown out and left me levelled, then hobbling, and still just kind of weak, lots of company, dear friends moving away and trying to honour the space our girls need to mourn that loss, trying to find time to make marriage a priority which is always harder than we think it should be, attempting to get enough sleep (ha!), squeeze in some exercise (double ha!) and also we are out of milk.
I think this is what 35 feels like.
Truly, life is good and rich and beautiful. But I am WIPED. Like, a good 78% of the time. I have been reading Jen Hatmaker’s newest book and there was a quote in there that just jumped straight into my soul:
“This is for all you girls around thirty-eight. You may be in the thick of he Family Years, and life is joyful and tedious and tender and bananas. You never knew you were capable of such juggling and you feel like you get it right around 33 percent of the time. Marriage has worn a trusted groove, and also it is hard. You’ve relinquished young adult angst and narrowed in on your gifts, your preferences, the stuff that gets you out of bed in the morning and begs to be brought forth. But life is really crowded, so many need you, and sometimes the competing voices wear you out, wear you down. You have some really beautiful dreams; some of them are already realized, some are half-baked, some live privately in your secret stash of yearnings.
You’ve earned those laugh lines, those stretch marks, those pesky gray hairs. Your body has served you well; it has maybe even delivered whole human beings. But, in any case, it has carried you halfway through your life….You’re smart. Your work is meaningful, and it is mattering. I am proud of you, proud to belong to you. I believe in us.”
Can I get a big AMEN? I need someone to stroke my hair at night and speak this over me.
When I look back at the photos of the summer, it’s been really swell, and I really hope that’s what we all remember.
Summer is hard, summer is beautiful. I am getting used to living with paradox, holding two things that are seemingly opposite, one in each hand, realizing they are connected and that are both true and that’s ok.