Let’s start out with the good stuff. No messing around. What would I have told myself 13 years ago when I started staying at home and spending a LOT of time with my husband and family? Ready for it?...
Slow down. Breathe. Give yourself space to grow. (Read that a few times... 💆🏼♀️)
Let that sink in for a moment.
I can have ....SPACE. TO. GROW.
Give yourself space to fail while you're trying your best at something new. Failure happens when your growing....everything is stripped away and hard and different.
You're trying to be kind in the midst of feeding kids, cleaning up messes, and finding things for them to wipe with (how are we out of toilet paper again?!). You are trying to balance all the things while maybe getting in a shower every once and a while. You are trying not lose it. Your tired and stretched thin.
Don't wish those years away momma. You are growing alongside your babies.
This is exactly what growth looks like...if we want it to be. Its messy and hard and wonderful and beautiful all at the same time.
What does it look like?
So, What does it look like if you are running after growth with something new and giving yourself space at the same time?
It means being OK at not being good at it right away. Sounds simple, but this is extremely frustrating. I took piano with my oldest daughter for THREE years, and it gave me so much compassion for kids in school making their brains do things it has never done before. I wanted to be the best so bad. But instead I was left tired and frustrated most of the time.
To me, the best way to make space for growth. Get help. Don't try to do it alone.
Seek help and advice from friends and learn from others that have done it well before you.
Sometimes this takes some work. But it is so worth the investment.
How I see failures now.
I now see failures as an opportunity to grow. One of my heros is a monk named Brother Lawrence who lived around 400 years ago. He didn't pray that he wouldn't make mistakes. He prayed that God would make something beautiful out of his mistakes he would make. He knew something beautiful could come out of his weaknesses.
A failure for me used to be not keeping the house perfectly clean every day...but leaving the dishes in the sink every once and a while sometimes meant a much needed movie night with the kids or hubby.
A failure for me used to be yelling when my kids didn't listen (still working on this sometimes ha!)...but it has turned into many conversations and opportunities about forgiveness and teaching them to be better listeners.
It has led to journey of taking care of myself (physically, mentally, and spiritually) so I am able to overcome anger in moments and manage stress better.
Something beautiful has come out of my weaknesses.
Talk about it.
Don't try to do it alone or expect others to know what you need or are struggling with. Talk to your friends, husband, and kids (at their maturity level of course) about it. Let someone in on your struggle.
When I have moments I struggle with anger or patience - my kids already know it because they usually aren't too far away and have a front roll seat. So, sometimes I take the opportunity to let my kids in on my struggle. We talk about it (at their level). I apologize and give them an opportunity to learn to forgive.
It’s one thing for them to see it - another to talk about it. Teach your kids how to apologize and forgive by showing them. Let them know you will try harder next time.
Empower them to walk alongside you...grow with you. They are dealing with their own growth as well. This can give them context to explain their own struggles as they grow up.
Growth is dirty and messy. But if you do simple things...try every day...good things come. You. Get. Stronger. When there is stretching or tension, we have a choice to give ourselves grace or perfection.
Trying something new? Beginning again?
Slow down. Breathe. Give yourself space to grow.