…because…children

For the last few months there has been this very exciting happening taking place in this wonderful place of Forbes – a new church building is well underway and is just weeks away from being completed and opening it’s doors to everyone who wants to come in.  It’s been many many many months in the making and there has been a crew of wonderful people absolutely smashing away any will of theirs to sleep, rest, or stop until it’s done, and working so hard, it makes me tired thinking about it!

Anyway, today there was lots of painting to be done and I planned to go help – which I did and it was great.  It was actually really nice to be able to help with something and not feel like a big bum not doing anything in the building.  I actually feel so lame saying this, but I painted a wall.  I was there for hours and apart from a little bit of cutting in, I painted one stingy wall….because…my children.  And I left feeling awfully useless!

But then I got home and amongst me feeling silly and useless I heard God say “Stop it”.  Because as much as I wasn’t the greatest of helps in the church building, my role as a parent is never ever useless.  Sometimes (or in my case many times) the dishes are piled up on the sink, the floor is filth, the dining table is everyone’s wardrobe and you feel useless because nothing got done today…because children.  Or maybe sometimes you just can’t think straight, your brain is taking a long hot bath in hormones, you can hardly answer anyone’s questions, let alone string a full sentence together that makes sense…because children.  Heck, maybe you’re even just bored because you’ve done the same routine for days, you feel like a hermit crab stuck in a slodgy mud puddle and you’re never getting out!

You know what though, no matter what your parenting role looks like (and it’s not always like all of the above 😉 it’s probably one of the most useful roles there is.  You are building people.  People who need you constantly, who rely on you.  You’re the one to teach them the do’s and dont’s, the yes’s and no’s, the why’s, the things that shape them into who they will be and help determine the imprint they will leave in this world.  Infact, your role as a parent is so important, significant and valuable, that the next time you get to the end of the day feeling like you haven’t done anything that’s even remotely interesting or useful, think again.

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Don’t belittle, the disciplining, the playing, the nurturing, the funny conversations, the games, the messes, the chaos.  None of it goes to waste, none of it is less important than painting a wall, building a church, or being a Queen’s right hand man.  Let me say this again, You are building people!  And while, changing nappies, getting drinks, and keeping our kids contained doesn’t feel like it’s very useful, don’t forget that it’s all a small part of the bigger picture.  A picture that needs you to help get the painting started.  So don’t belittle yourself, or your role, and don’t forget that while you may not always be useful in building projects, your role as a parent will never stop being useful and very, very much needed.

Now say this after me, “I am useful…because children”.  😉

Xx

 

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The Art of Being Real

My Wonderhubby has this song he sings every time our children throw themselves on the ground in pure rage, tantruming and screaming, and for any P.O.D fans out there, you’d know it!  We like to call it the tantruming theme song and it goes a little like this “It feels like the end of the world, what happened to peace here on earth, it never gets better but worse, it feels like the end of the world to me.”  He reckons the lyrics best describe how he believes they are feeling right in that moment.  I often laugh at him while he sings it, but it kind of makes me think about how real our children really are.

Our kids are the realest beings I know.  They speak their mind, tell it how it is, show how they’re REALLY feeling, and in the good or the bad they keep it simple, don’t put up a front.  They give you the whole package – good and bad – and I love it.  I love they’re vulnerability, their emotion, their un-contained joy and their un-contained anger.  Whether they’re squealing like a pig on fire from sheer anger or they’re rolling on the floor laughing hysterically because they just popped a windy.  I love how real they are all the time…open, raw, and honest to who they are.

So when and why does there come a time where we feel the need to pretend we’re ok, fake a smile, laugh along when you’re truly aching inside.  When did it become ok, to pretend you’re ok.  How easy is it to hide behind your uniform, your title, your social media profile.  I found myself a few weeks ago, in a horrible desperate place.  Swamped with anxiety and staring in the face of post natal depression and no idea how I was going to make it through the day with three little children.  I knew I needed a break and that meant fessing up to someone with how I was feeling and ASKING for help.  I had never done that before.  I had never told someone what I was feeling and if they could help me.  And for anyone who has gone through those feelings of anxiousness and depression, saying out loud how you feel sounds sooooo ridiculous to someone who hasn’t experienced it – heck, sometimes it even sounds ridiculous to you!  But it’s so so real.

It is so hard to ask for help and it is so hard to say, you’re not ok.  It’s so hard to turn up on someone’s doorstep and do nothing but wail like a shark siren until your eyes are dry.  But it’s so hard to hold it in, fake a smile, tell a story that you’re doing great, post a picture on instagram about how wonderful your day was hiking through the desert, surfing sand dunes and dancing on camels, and hooray! you didn’t even faint from heat or break a sweat (not).  Because inside you’re head is screaming at you to hold it together or, what will people think of you.  Paint a beautiful picture on the outside and everyone will think you rock!  When all you really want to do is collapse upon a box of nappies in total anguish.

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It’s actually really releasing to admit where you’re really at.  That day I asked for help, I released myself from the pressure that I had to be ok all the time, keep my head high above the waves, war on and grow some solid, steel, man balls.  That day I released myself from the lie that if I wasn’t ok, than I was a failure, a burden, and an unstable creature.  That horrible day, I stopped being so hard on myself and let myself be free.  Free of the burden that I had to be ok at all costs, free of the shame attached with not being ok, and free to be real.  And do you know what I got from it?  I got a whole lot of support, a lot of love and a lot of hope that you know what? I’m not alone ever with anything and that’s a pretty big deal to know, when you’re not ok.  So, I’m not going to go ahead and ask you if you’re ok – you know the answer to that.  But I will tell you this dear person, don’t be so hard on yourself.  It is absolutely ok to admit that you’re not ok.

If you’re wondering about the photo…it’s from a little while ago but no, my Wonderhubby was not ok that day 😛

Xx