Working moms, where you at?
Working mom. I’ve always been a working mom. Thankfully, He has given me the grace to do it all these years. It’s not always easy and I have some hard days. Some days I come home exhausted from being the smiley enthusiastic teacher during the day to make sure my family is fed, the kitchen is clean, spend time with my kids and husband, and do the evening routine while my eyelids are pulling down pretty hard by 6 pm. There have been countless times that I can’t take one more step without completely relying on Him for strength and one more ounce of patience before I call it a night. Because let’s be real. Do I get frustrated? Yes. Do I lose my peace? Heck yes. But somehow I find my way back… well, He finds me right where I am and gently reminds me to sit with Him again. And He’s there. My constant. His presence, so real even on the most tiring of days.
Here’s one of my faves of all time. So much so, that if I lived in that era, I would have been that crazy lady knocking at his door quite often. Brother Lawrence, a monk from the 1600s, was known for living so abundantly in the presence of God. He said, “The time of business does not with me differ from the time of prayer, and in the noise and clatter of my kitchen, while several persons are at the same time calling for different things, I posses God in as great tranquility as if I were upon my knees at the blessed sacrament.” This! While several persons (little persons) are pulling at every side, I possess God! Whoa.
This quote, also Brother Lawrence, I have carried in my heart on the hardest days when I didn’t sit with Him in the quiet. “Lord of all pots and pans and things… Make me a saint by getting meals and washing up the plates!”
Growing up, my mom had to work. To be honest, I do not know how she did it. She would get home at 6 pm, not at 4 pm like I do. After working long days at a dental office, she would get home to whip up a hearty dinner along with the dreaded juice concoctions she made us drink each evening. I always remember her being there. She was always there for dinner, the house was clean, the laundry done, and she still did bedtime with us. I have so many memories with her and I don’t feel like I had an overworked, too tired for anything kind of mom. Does this mean she wasn’t completely exhausted some days? No. I believe His grace covered her. She relied on Him for strength and patience too. Her example is hidden in my heart of what a present working mom looks like.
Here are a couple of practical tips that help me get ‘er done each week.
• Get yourself organized on Sunday night for the week. For example, make sure the fridge is stocked with easy go-to meals, snacks, and creamer for your coffee!
• Make sure your kids' outfits, and yours, are picked out the night before.
• Don’t let your laundry pile up! This is a big one. Who wants to spend their whole Saturday doing 7 loads of laundry? If you do a little every 2 or 3 days, then you save yourself from hours of work all at once.
• Simple crock-pot meals. Leave your crock-pot out on your counter top during the week. Just drop your meal in before leaving for work each day.
• Get started on dinner time earlier. We start at 5 pm. This way, the kitchen is done before bedtime hits. After the kids go down, it still gives me some down time instead of toiling over the kitchen sink.
• Read this book.
Luke 17: 20-21
20 Now when He was asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, He answered them and said, “The kingdom of God does not come with observation; 21 nor will they say, ‘See here!’ or ‘See there!’ For indeed, the kingdom of
God is within you.”