Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Contentedness v. More Discipline

I believe I have finally come to the crux.

My husband assures me that I am not a failure every single day, all day, as I believe. I made him promise which in this house means you cannot lie. Period.

But I look around and see all the things I know need to be done and don't get done. Except monitoring my children in some meaningful way makes doing things even in the next room difficult with their blood-curdling screams piercing me like a needle to my brain. I do not tolerate that well. Mama doesn't really like a lot of noise. The general, run-of-the-mill housekeeping does not get done regularly until I am completely sick of it. That takes a long time. In order for me to be effective at home and clean well, I need to be alone, or at least mostly so.

I do "waste" a lot of time doing what I am doing now. Absorbing myself in my online universe where some people have better lives than me, others have worse, some people have great ideas, or I just find something fascinating and I Follow.That.Rabbit!

Needless to say, I feel much guilt about the state of my affairs.

But is this guilt justified?

Am I being convicted of a lack of discipline?

Is it okay to not get laundry done again? Not cook supper again? Not do school again? Not to read my Bible again?

Do I need to develop more discipline or learn to be content with what I can manage?


Luke said...

My quote for this kind of thing is, "If it doesn't push your forward, drop it!"

There is a big difference between conviction and condemnation. Conviction inspires, encourages, and makes you say, "I can do that, so I'm gonna!" Condemnation says, "You stink at that."

So, what I tell my wife, who also struggles with getting things done, is to take a few minutes and do one or two things. For instance: Spend five minutes cleaning the kitchen. That's it. It's amazing what can be done in 5-15 minutes.

And then build off those successes. But if everything is just beating you down, don't bother. Laundry isn't worth that. Find the conviction, and drop the condemnation!


Lindsay said...

I'm with you, girl.


I think the answers to these questions change over time. Right now, the answer to "is it okay not to get school done" is probably: yes that's fine. But in three years, school will be the priority (instead of, maybe, laundry - as one can only hope). Does that make sense? Right now, you MUST do laundry every day just so everyone has clean clothes, so that's the priority. In a couple of years, when your children can go for more than exactly 4 1/2 minutes without spilling something or rolling in a mud puddle (maybe that doesn't happen at your house), then laundry won't be the issue, it will be school...or food...or something else.

I have to constantly re-evaluate my priorities. I'm having to start focusing more on school for my 2nd-grader, which might mean not as many trips to Granny's during the week. It means changing a couple of things...and letting go of what I can't change - like the fact that my crawling 12-month-old literally has food particles on his onesie that he picked up while crawling around my kitchen floor. Yes, it's gross. I'll mop as soon as I can. In the meantime, I think I'll try to remember that it keeps him happy when he can find Cheerios on the floor to eat...

Anonymous said...

I am with you , on this. I, to have trouble getting things done.

Laundry for example I may wash,dry and fold but it does not get put away till a week later,when the kids actually need clothes in their drawers. Most of the time i just dig thru the piles.

I do not mop every week. Ha maybe once a month if i am lucky. I am lucky to get a bath twice a week.

But remember your kids are only little once,and there will be a time when you have nothing better to do than wash your clothes,sweep the floors etc.
Your a great mother to 3 girls. Don't sweat the small stuff.
You are creating memories,and that is worth way more than laundry,dusting,and so on.

I love you girl...Kari

Lizz @ Yes, and So is My Heart said...

I know this scenario all too well. I've been thinking a lot about making sure I only attempt "bite-size" chunks of things at a time. Somedays this means everything is messy, other days it might mean more gets done. I don't know if that makes any sense, but it is helping me, just a bit. Know you aren't alone!