If you are like most wives, mothers, and homeschool mothers there has been a time when you thought these roles stretched and pulled at you until you would break if you just couldn’t be alone for a while. If only you could finish that project, or read a book, or any number of things that you would like to do without interruption. I remember wondering when my children were small if I would ever go to the bathroom alone again – can you relate?
With three children under five, the youngest with leukemia, and a husband who was required to work 90+ hours a week I often felt like I was at or at least near the breaking point.
Then there came the time when my husband Dan was going to have a few days off and he decided to go camping with some guys because, “He needed a break!” Well, that about did it for me. Didn’t I need a break too? Now, instead of being gone 90 hours for that week, he would just be gone.
Dan, baffled by my accusations, contacted our pastor and made an appointment to meet with him. By the time we got there I wasn’t speaking to Dan and after our pastor agreed with Dan I wasn’t speaking to him either.
Where can you go when you aren’t speaking to your husband or pastor? Why the Lord, of course. Why is it that we often see the Lord as our last resort?
I remember pouring out my complaints to Him, knowing that He certainly would see my side of the story and realize how misunderstood I was. But no, He reminded me that I was supposed to be Dan’s helpmeet – he wasn’t supposed to be mine.
It was during this time of my life that I realized Dan was never going to meet all my needs. I know that sounds bizarre and I never would have said that was what I was expecting, because I didn’t think I was expecting him to do that. But that is exactly what I was doing.
In his few hours off work I was expecting him to be at home helping me do all that I needed to do. Before you get too upset, I have nothing against husbands helping out at home and Dan is so very good at this. He’s done it all, baths, diapers, up for hours at night with fussy babies, and surprising me with unexpected times to visit with a friend.
It isn’t about who does what, it’s about expectations.
One of the problems we face as wives, mothers, and homeschool mothers is that we rarely get to a place where we can say our work is done. More than likely we say “I need to quit for today” – which means that there is still much to do but we just can’t go on. So when an able body walks through the door we think they should just pitch in and help – especially if it is our husband. But ladies, he has been working hard all day too. Our job as wives is to help him to become all that the Lord has called him to be. As we do that, we will find that we are feeling more and more fulfilled as women.
The common response to this is, “But what about me?”
At this point I’m going to refer you to Amy Robert’s article The “Me Time” Myth because she expresses my thoughts and feelings so well. I’ve referred back to it many times, and I expect you will want to bookmark it too.
I’m going to quote one of my favorite parts of her article, but I know you will want to read it in its entirety.
‘’Me Time is a myth. It is an unattainable, always interruptible, never satisfying piece of junk psychology. Me Time, by its very name, suggests that who we are during the daily grind is not who we truly are. It begs us to search for fulfillment outside of the titles of “wife” and “mother.” It accuses precious little ones and God-given spouses for suppressing us. It reduces motherhood to a disease in which little dirty faces and endless monotonous tasks slowly suck the life out of us. It says we can never be refreshed by spending time in the presence of those we care for day in and day out. It points out a perceived hole in our world that needs to be filled, a tank that must be refueled, a monster that will swallow us if we neglect to feed it Me Time.
The more we indulge the thought that we are somehow owed this time away, the more we will seek after it. The more we seek after it, the more every little opportunity afforded us to take a break will seemingly end too quickly. The everyday life of being a mother will become drudgery. We will dread every aspect of this role. We will snap at our children any time they try to draw us out of our precious time alone. Not getting this time will ruin our day, and if we do manage some time away, we will despise the re-entry. However, with any lie, there is a certain amount of truth hidden within. There is an emptiness within us that needs to be filled, but only God can fill what you are aching for.’’
Ladies, this is why we always end up at the feet of Jesus. Nothing, no one, no amount of anything, can satisfy that emptiness in us except Jesus. We are all made to need Him. He is the only one who can satisfy all our needs.
Philippians 4:19-20 “But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus. Now unto God and our Father be glory for ever and ever. Amen.”
“I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.” Philippians 4:12-14
Finding Joy in the Journey,
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