It’s been a challenging week. The above picture about sums it up. We were trying to take first day of school photos and this was the most accurate one. Both my girls have been in a funk and I’ve often felt like my parenting isn’t making a difference. Like my words of encouragement and discipline aren’t having much of an effect. Like the words I’m saying aren’t the words I wish I were saying. Like, if only I were a better mom…
I’ve struggled to keep my cool as Beach Girl threw her geometric solids during “school time“. (I’ve never read about that happening on a homeschool blog… Maybe we’re the only ones with flying homeschool work?). I’ve held back tears while trying to figure out why Beach Baby’s entire body was covered in hives (Likely cause: almonds. Or, the medicine she was on for last week’s ear infection. Either way, she’s mostly better now, thankfully). And, the low point of it all, a few nights ago, I woke up with a roach crawling on my face.
Yes, on my face. No, it wasn’t just a nightmare.
Obviously, I had a hard time getting back to sleep that night and have felt a bit anxious going to sleep every night since.
This week, I’ve been singing “Isaiah 43” in my mind repeatedly through my exhaustion and anxieties –
“When you walk through the waters, I will be with you.
And the waves they will not overcome you.
Do not fear.
For I have redeemed you.
I have called you by name.
You are mine.”
It’s my go-to song. I sing it to my girls almost nightly, I encourage Beach Girl to sing it to herself if she’s scared or lonely, and I recite it to myself anytime I’m sad or anxious. And, at points this week, the truths in that song have encouraged me immensely. Singing it to myself has helped me to keep serving my family when I just want to collapse on the couch in defeat and it’s helped me to fall asleep at night when I just want to turn the lights on and watch out for roaches.
But, other times, I’ve felt doubtful and like maybe we’d all be better off if I just threw in the towel on this whole parenting thing. I’ve felt like maybe things really will overwhelm and defeat me.
Like Wednesday morning, when I was in my bedroom getting a sweatshirt and I turned around to see another huge roach scampering across the floor next to my side of the bed. I screamed, smooshed it with a shoe, and then just broke down crying.
I tried to hold it together when the girls came in the room. To pretend that humongous bugs don’t bother me. To not mention the fact that I had one on my face recently. To not let them see how defeated and discouraged I feel this week.
Then, in God’s amazing timing, my two year old told me just the words I needed to hear. Words that encouraged me and spoke truth to my heart. Words that helped me know she is indeed listening to me (at least occasionally!). Words that reminded me God is working in my life and heart just as much as in hers, while we live life together.
Beach Girl walked up to me and said, ever so sweetly, “Mommy, what’s wrong? Was you scared of that bug? It’s okay. You can just sing to yourself (to the tune of Isaiah 43): ‘When you walk through the bugs, you’ll not be scared.'”