Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Choosing the good things that last

I've dealt with anxiety as long as I can remember. What's gonna happen? What's expected of me? ADD-related foot-in-mouth syndrome. Social awkwardness. How am I gonna screw this up? That sort of thing.

So, for a number of reasons, I've not learned to rest in the wisdom God's giving me or in His guidance. I'm often overwhelmed with my choices and/or find myself frozen with multiple things going on that need my attention. Too many options, too many chances at failure, and only one seemingly "right" answer.  So, I'm basically learning - all over again in my mid-40's - to trust my heart and my gut.

Juggling family life often feels like Sisyphus-like battle. Get up psyched for a new day, new ideas, new desire to stay organized and end each day collapsing on the couch or into bed citing all the reasons the day went wrong, things didn't get done, all I have left to do.
Well, I'm tired of living that way.

So, we've been making little adjustments. The first? To trust my gut...and to not feel bad about it! As a result, we've made some parenting calls lately that go against our previous parenting grain.

Things like...

Having Pojke stay home today when it was his sister that was sick. We were at the ER late with Flicka for some IV hydration following a strep diagnosis. We all slept in. We all could use a day off.

Judiciously using/offering mental health days. My kids have had a pretty rotten year at school. The move from Michigan, the bullying, trouble making friends, etc. So, over the winter, each of the Vikings got to stay home for a day when they were feeling run down but weren't "technically" sick.

One night's fishing instead of homework. Both kids have fallen in love with our new local river, Illinois' Rock River, and have taken an interest in fishing. They need some more time with their daddy so, on Monday, we made the choice to forgo our usual after-school/homework/dinner routine to spend a couple of wonderful hours just sitting...and fishing.

I value their time in school but their time with us as a family will mean more in the long run. It initally goes against my teacher training and parenting grain, my heart and "momma gut" says it's true.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. Philippians 4.8 ESV

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