I have a friend who seems to have her 'ducks in a row' all the time.... always looks classy, generous to others, so organized, funny, relaxed, happy family, hard worker. I've teetered on being really jealous, but I like her too much to let envy into the relationship.
As I've observed how she does EVERYTHING so well, I realized that she DOESN'T DO everything!!! She does what she can, and gets help where she needs it.
Whoa... that was another AHA experience for me... I can't do it all!
My twins are always telling me as they stomp their feet, "I can do it all by myself!!" Sometimes, we mommies do the same thing in our own, "grown up" sort of way. We think we have to do it all, and then we end up overwhelmed and totally exhausted.
I felt that way not too long ago. It seemed as though I never got a break. From the wee hours of the morning to the stroke of midnight, I was cleaning, cooking, laundering, bathing, chauffeuring, grocery shopping, entertaining kids, healing owies, and taking care of church or other responsibilities... and more. However, "everything" never got done. I felt so unorganized even though I was constantly working! Ack!!
My friend sent me the name and number of her housekeeper, Adrianna. So, I called her to help me deep clean my house, but then chickened out.
I thought, "I'm a stay at home mom. I should be able to get all of this done. Jenn works full time, that's why she's justified in having someone help her." (blah, blah, blah)
Finally, a few weeks later, I called Adrianna. And... life changed for me!!
She accomplished in one day what it takes more than a week for me to do, because I have so many other little tasks.
Yes, I paid her, and YES it was SOOOO worth it!
I finally felt like I was caught up. Just having a little help mad such a world of difference!
That experience made me think about how much as women, we try to do everything, and be everything to everyone. We are too scared or worried to ask for help. I know though, that
we all NEED help... in one way or another!
I've wondered, why have I been so hesitant at times to accept help or even ask for it??
I'm pretty sure that my reasons may also be your reasons:
-Don't want to impose
-Feel that there should be no reason I can't do it by myself
-I've been taken advantage of in the past, and do not want anyone to think I'm taking advantage of them
-Embarrassment that I even need help
-Too expensive, or I don't want to pay for something I can do myself
The secret is to realize that we are not perfect, nor expected to be. When someone helps us, we can pay them for their services, do something in return, or just accept that someone wants to help us for nothing in return. We can pass it forward when we are able to do so.
It is so liberating to have help when we need it.
Are you overwhelmed or exhausted?
Here are a few suggestions to get some help:
- Realize that you are not alone! We all need help. It doesn't mean you are a failure! No one can DO EVERYTHING!
- Round up the help you need:
- Your husband
- Make an age appropriate job chart for your children and stick to it (withhold allowance or privileges if they do not help)
- Trade with friends or sisters
- Accept help when someone offers
- Find the service you need, and pay someone to give it (doesn't have to be permanent.. even a little help goes a LONG way).
- A counselor
- An ecclesiastical leader
- Medicaid, WIC, or Food Stamps if you are struggling financially ( **If you don't need this kind of help, yet judge others. Watch out... you may have to use it also some day. )
Life is a big juggling act. We can't do it alone. Joy comes in giving help, and also receiving it.