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Am I doing this right? Feels like Drowning

This week, life feels a bit like drowning. I'm fairly certain I'm not doing this stay-at-home-mom thing right. At the very least, other people are doing it better.(Last Updated On: April 19, 2016)

This week, life feels a bit like drowning.

I’m fairly certain I’m not doing this stay-at-home-mom thing right. At the very least, other people are doing it better.

I look at the crusty kitchen counter, the dog hair infested floor, the math worksheet she doodled all over (the I LOVE YOU’s are sweet, but what is 5+2?!), the three other subjects we didn’t get to, exercise bike taunting me, the completely unhealthy frozen pizza that is probably going to be dinner (again), and when was my last shower?!

Life shouldn't feel like drowning when we're already saved. Am I doing THIS right? Click To Tweet

Other moms text me like – wanna hang out? and I stare at the message feeling like a failure. Obviously, they have some multi-tasking mom-mojo I’ve missed.

Because I don’t know how to do all this!?!?! and have time or energy for friendships, marriage and blog and myself and . . . the list just grows the longer I think about it. Every rushed day feels like a day I missed just watching my little girl grow up.

How is everyone else doing this momming thing better than I am? What am I missing?

This week, life feels a bit like drowning. I'm fairly certain I'm not doing this stay-at-home-mom thing right. At the very least, other people are doing it better.

I’ve been trying to hold it together for weeks, but I can’t. even. breathe. Saturday, my husband gave me six hours to be alone, and I just sobbed on the couch for most of that time.

Because life is never just life. It is the extra expenses I didn’t anticipate, injuries and illnesses, the simple tasks that go horrendously wrong. For example, I finally bought ink for my beautiful Pray Awake page, then spent three hours trying to fix printer driver errors. #ThanksGeekSquad

Take life add parenting, working, family, homeschooling and it is relentless.

Relentless, I say!

We all feel this way some days. You might have a toddler who broke your glasses, or an iPhone mysteriously in the washer, a clogged sink, or kids with a stomach bug, construction detours when you’re late, ailing parents, or difficult family issues, and that is just how it goes.

AM I DOING THIS RIGHT? Because this feels a bit like drowning.

But maybe, the kind of drowning that happens on TV, a character is splashing about, desperately waving, screaming for help until she finally realizes the water has been two feet deep the whole time.

Yeah, I’m drowning in a pool of my own making. Because I take TOO much responsibility for everything, including things that were never my job.

Many of the things I want in my life are good things, but are they God things?

Did He say we must live in a pristine house? Did God say my kindergartener would be deprived if I didn’t teach her a second language? Did he say I must personally juggle family, friends, marriage, job, and writing everyday?

The things I want for myself and family might be good things, but are they GOD things? Click To Tweet

Or am I putting too much on my own plate before God gives it to me?

Yesterday’s sermon at church was about Elijah literally going from the height of God’s fiery demonstration at the altar to suicidal depression because of Jezebel’s persecution. From the outside, I easily saw how silly Elijah was to forget God was clearly with him.

But sitting in my seat, I knew that’s what I was doing with this panic.

I’ve had some great ‘God is working in my life for real’ moments over the past few months, then a couple hiccups and I’m down. What is with me?

I’m going to be real honest with you. I cried, and I prayed, and then slept on it twice before realizing a lot of my panic is fear.

It’s not trusting God for my family’s future, taking the weight of the world on my shoulders and letting my busyness replace waiting on Him.

Getting a handle on this panic means more time tuning out the world and turning to my bible and prayer, asking God for what I need. I hear Him whisper, You don’t have to do all this today, wait! I’m growing you for each next step. Stop rushing.

Isaiah 40:31 ESV /  But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.

And relief floods my heart. The strength to handle tomorrow is being built by today. Just ride it, minute by minute, if necessary.

My desire to get to some picture-perfect version of myself forgot all the beauty that only a daily relationship with Christ over time will create in me.

In rushing, I’ve traded away God’s plan for my wants, only to discover myself in rags rather than His riches.

In rushing, I've traded God's plan for my wants, only to find myself in rags not His riches. Click To Tweet

And now I’m crying again, because He is so faithful. In this panic, I didn’t become the harpy of my past. I opened my bible, prayed, sought Godly women, and let myself cry.

I’m not drowning; I’m learning to swim.

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34 thoughts on “Am I doing this right? Feels like Drowning

  1. Beautiful post… though I am not a Christian and did not quite understand the Bible references, I know sometimes faith is what moves us forward. I absolutely love your last line. And I hope now you no longer feel like drowning 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

    1. I am glad you enjoyed it. The scriptures have new meaning every time we encounter them as Christians because we’re in a different place, but basically, I believe God has a plan for my life and when I trust Him, I am renewed and strengthened. It is just one beautiful aspect of following Christ.

  2. I appreciate the reminder to depend on God’s power every moment! And I love how you ended the post with “I’m learning to swim.” Thank you for the post, Jennifer.

    1. Every moment. Funny how the challenges of today were so much bigger than the ones that prompted this post, but I had God’s peace with me because He taught me to lean in harder not react stronger. Big lessons and little steps. Imperfect progress, but progress.

  3. There are definitely times I feel like I’m drowning, and it’s often when I try to do thins on my own strength, instead of relying on God.

    1. I catch myself doing that all the time. My own strength is a funny way to think about it when it is my biggest weakness!

  4. I love the dichotomy you paint between what’s good and what’s ultimately in line with God’s will in this world. Always easy to talk about about but hard to live out!

    1. It is a continuing journey towards heaven. I’m learning!

  5. I felt happy when I heard another mom share earlier this week that she constantly forgets to take the clothes out of the washer and get them into the dryer and then she has to wash them again because they stink! Been there and done that too many times…doggy paddling : )

    1. I usually get them to the dryer because my washer plays a happy little tune that catches my attention, but they sometimes live in their long enough I have to throw in a wet towel to steam out the wrinkles. And they made get dried three or four times 😁

  6. Such a great post. So open and honest. I’m not a SAHM yet, but I plan to be one day. Thank you for being open about your feelings and being a reminder that we can’t always have it all together and God doesn’t want us to. I’m already the type of person that always has a million things going and wants to be perfect at them all. I think He’s teaching me that I’m going to fail so I have to lean on Him. So good!

    1. Even before being a mom I struggled with perfectionism, but when someone’s entire life rests on me, it makes it so much harder.

  7. So true – the comfort is there when we seek it – this motherhood business was taunted to come naturally, and maybe it does for many, but learning to swim is certainly more akin to the reality I know – risking my life in a medium I’d rather avoid and yet slowly I realized my muscles will do the work, and my heart will be still long enough to breathe, one stroke at a time.

  8. Am I on candid camera?!

    Oh yes, let’s unchain the extra unnecessary burdens from our feet – we’re already learning to swim in deep waters. Treading the waters of parenthood is hard enough as it is without all the other demands!

  9. As momma, we put too much pressure on ourselves. If you ask around all of the other mommas you know are feeling the same way. Praying for you and let God take care of the rest.

    1. Learning to let go of the fear even when I can’t do it all.

  10. What a wonderful blog post! This was exactly what I needed to read today and be reminded of! I like your quote: In rushing I’ve traded away God’s plan my wants… You’re right! Thanks for sharing your heart so openly and being a blessing for it!

    1. I’m glad God used my worst couple of weeks this year for some good through this blog! Hope your week gets better.

  11. I love this post. I’ve been there more than I like to admit. In fact I wrote a post called “Drowning in Motherhood”. Motherhood can easily make up feel this way, I can totally relate. I can give to my family until I let God pour into me. Sometimes, I forget though. Somedays I’m less then a stellar mother, but that’s okay God fills in where I lack.

    It’s okay not to be perfect, it’s okay to be at the end of your rope, that’s when God takes over. Great post!

  12. I think a lot of us ask our selves the same question “am I doing this right?” and like you said in his timing not ours. great post!

    1. Thanks. None of us are getting it all right or all wrong, just usually feels one or the other at the time. And hopefully we’re growing everyday.

  13. God is working out each of our lives – in His time – if we would just submit to it…

  14. I can absolutely relate to this post! I feel this way often – thank you for validating my feelings 😉

    1. It is nice knowing we’re not alone!

  15. Sometimes life can feel that way for me as well. When the world has its own goals and ideas that we as followers of Christ can not follow. The struggle of life is also one that we battle with the bills, the job , so much to do that it never feels like we are catching up.
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    1. We never do seem to catch up, go reminder that we’re never finished being refined on this side of heaven.

  16. I really enjoyed this post and can relate. 🙂 I especially liked your closing line because for me it’s all about that work-in-progress!
    Jen @ Being Confident of This

    1. Definitely learning that progress has stops and starts.

  17. This is great! I especially love your closing line! Sometimes we do take too much on ourselves. I text my friends to hang out less often than I used to, now that life is busier. But with one friend in particular, I try not to let a week go by without a visit or a walk. I leave my dishes in the sink and I forget about my dirty floor, and I enjoy hours in her company talking about the frustrations of raising kids. 🙂 Sometimes I feel like a failure because we live like pigs (not really!), but you have to take time for yourself, to connect with others and vent, time to just sit still and read or do something else you enjoy. It’s okay if you can’t handle it all on your own, because we were never really meant to! Either way, this is just a season of our lives, and it will pass (in 18 years).

    1. I definitely still make time for friends. But I have parents I call several times a week each, friends who live far away, and I also have a few local friends I make time for.

  18. …the dog hair infested floor…that is what I walked into today. I can relate with how you feel, life has such a way of rushing by and if we don’t stop, it can take over. I am so glad I got to read this post today, life has been rushing by for me. And I too, can say, I am not drowning, I am learning to swim!

    1. I’m glad you can relate. It is hard for me to admit I’m struggling. Nice to know I’m not alone.

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