1 John 1:8-10
If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives.
Well, they say that “confession is good for the soul,” so here it goes…
I lost my cool this evening.
Not to the point of throwing things (although that thought has occasionally entered my mind).
Not to the point of full-blown yelling (although sometimes I think that that is the only way some messages seem to ever be heard).
But definitely to the point where I think I ended our families’ night on an ugly note with everyone going to bed not feeling very “happy.”
The very human part of me wants to sit here and justify my feelings.
1. Dirty, wet laundry left in several different rooms by a child who seems to have plenty of time to flip through the television channels.
2. Phone texting by a teenage son that seems to be a preferred way to “live” in our house and yet be connected with fellow teens 24/7.
3. Computer surfing in the kitchen to “catch up on the news” instead of a totally engaged-in-our-family husband.
Oh, yes, I have lots of reasons to feel okay with being irritable tonight.
But none of them seem to make me feel better now.
The truth is this:
1. Many times my kids don’t pick up their things because they know I will eventually. They don’t say that, but I know they must think it from time to time. I know I would if I left stuff laying around and noticed that several days later an elf had magically made it all disappear! That sounds amazing to me right now! I need to be more consistent with my expectations…
2. When I was a teenager, I talked on the phone to my friends…today, teens text. Somewhere in the midst of this reality, we have got to find a balance in our home. After all, I know I didn’t carry a phone with me everywhere I went when I was 16 just in case someone called or just wanted to say “lol” or something.
3. My husband does a lot of totally-engaged-family things, and he needs some down time. I need to be thankful for all he does do for our family and with us. He had, after all, just spent an hour and a half videotaping Todd’s final choir concert and then joining me at Olivia’s softball game until after 9:30.
Yes, tonight I am totally GUILTY of having a short fuse and an ugly tone of voice.
You’d think that things would be calmer here with only two children at home for the summer…….
But somehow I am allowing everyday things to become stressors again (something I thought I’d never do after losing Nick), and I want to regain the spirit I had when Nick was in his last months of life.
Nothing else mattered at that time.
I had no calendar where I was writing down upcoming things, because I knew that, according to every doctor who saw Nick, somewhere out there in the future on my calendar was looming the day I would be forced to say bye to Nick.
So, time froze for me.
There was no to-do list.
There was no stress about laundry.
There was no noticing other people’s use of time.
There was just Nick and life for that day ,and THAT WAS ALL I NEEDED OR WANTED.
Please pray that God can renew a clean heart in me and a steadfast spirit.
I do not want to be a shallow Christian whose personality changes when I feel that life isn’t just like I want or need it to be.
But also pray that I can be the mom I need to be the children I still have at home. I want them to remember me as a smiling, loving mom who had high expectations but covered every mistake with God’s grace.
I want to be a wife who is fun, easy to talk to, forgiving, and once again filled with grace, grace, grace.
So, tonight, I felt that it was only fair to share the truth right along with the great news that two kitties have a home now!
People write sweet things to me from time to time like “you are such an inspiration,” and I often feel as if they do not know the real me.
The real me gets irritated.
The real me can be a very-annoying backseat driver.
The real me gets stressed about silly things like needing to mail a bunch of graduation cards to kids we know who are graduating but not having them all addressed yet.
The real me needs a hug from her kids now and then without having to ask for one.
The real me needs to take a nap for about three days…and staying up to write this blog post is going to be the end of a late-night era.
Well, a good friend encouraged me to be honest……and I was.
Thank you for loving me in spite of my ability to take a non-stressful night and transform it into something ugly,
<3 you!!! Thanks for sharing! :)
Wow, I could have written that! The same thing is going on at my house. I have kids about the same ages as some of yours, and can really relate to the feeling of not being appreciated and then feeling irritable and angry. I have been struggling with some issues with my middle child and life has not been pleasant around here lately— the last two nights I completely lost it and yelled at him before bedtime. I feel terrible about it but at the same time so very frustrated with him. This morning we started out by hugging and saying sorry. I understand what you are saying also about the perspective with which we should look at things. Sometimes in the moment it is difficult to do. I’m trying every day– and your blog really is a source of inspiration to me– but I do feel like I “know” you on some level. I know that the Scripture verses you write and the way you tie them in to your day really helps me a lot! I wish I could do what you are able to do. I lost my passion for writing on my blog about a year ago. It’s still there but I haven’t felt like writing much. Maybe I will again, but in the meantime, blogs like yours keep me going. Love you, Tammy!
Tammy- I love you. Your honesty just now was refreshing. How much more free is a person who gets out everything they carry around and hold in. Your honesty has made me think and now I too can live in the joy of the day with those whom I love instead of worrying about bills and cleaning! Thank you for your courage to speak and your willingness to share. I hope you feel the big hug I am sending your way till the day I get to “hand deliver” it. Loving you this day and holding you in my heart always!
Jesse Mcphail Ramsay
I know what you mean about wishing we could go back and have the same mindset – that time with Renee in NY, those last four months, just living in the moment.