Every year I try to pick one word to guide me. One year my word was “Generous” another year was the word “Moments”. This year my word is:
I feel so busy all of the time. Being a pastor’s wife, a mother of two children ages 3 and 3 months…not to mention cooking and cleaning and play dates and music class. My 3 year old Henry is feisty and fierce and kind and loving and I love him so much but the days are hard sometimes. 3 year olds need so much connection and communication. They need a calm presence to get through big emotions. They take a lot of patience and intentionality.
My 3 month old Bonnie is, well, 3 months old. She nurses all day, and although such a patient baby who loves to play alone on her play mat, sometimes she is just so very particular, like, “Hold me, but not while you sit, you have to stand. Don’t move either when you are holding me, just stand riiiight here. Oh you think you can sit down since I don’t want you to move? I SAID STAND, WOMAN!” And honestly my 3 year old wakes more often at night than my tiny baby and then everyone wakes at 6 am.
I try making weekly date nights with my husband but that never works out. We're too tired and too overwhelmed. I know it's an important relationship to maintain but at the end of the night he wants to watch a movie and I want to watch youtube videos and so we do these things in the same space but we are not together.
I am so happy in this messy life, I really am. But I am also tired and I often feel like I’m just barely keeping my head above the water, and I have to keep treading and treading or else I’ll drown. I have no time. I want to give my kids time. I want to give my husband time. I want to give myself time.
I don’t want to be a slave to time and routine either though. I don’t want to be strict and limited. I just want some healthy rhythms.
I want to say that every day I will give myself space to do something just for me.
I want to spend every dinner together at the table and talk to each other.
I want a moment to spend outside every day with my kids (even if I really, REALLY don’t want to…it’s too cold!)
I want time with just Henry.
I want time with just Bonnie.
I want time with Just Wes.
I don’t want a schedule. I don’t want a routine.
I just want a rhythm.
How can I create the best conditions for these rhythms to happen naturally? These are my ideas that I think will work for me:
- No social media while my children are awake.
- Wake up just a bit before the kids do.
- Spend a little time right after they go to bed doing a quick tidy up.
- Reserve the evening for one on one reconnecting.
Will I always do these every day? Probably not. But it’s a posture. It is a direction I want to go. It is not one more thing I need to do. It is a rhythm. A rhythm, I pray, that lifts me out of the overwhelming waters, and instead lets me splash and play in the waves.