I've been a stay at home mom for almost 6 years. How in the world did that happen? I have stayed at home precisely one year longer than I taught school. I probably wouldn't want my child in "my" classroom if I ever go back. Can you say, starting over???? Well, let's not get carried away with that thought….go back to work….ha! With my adorable mess of a two year old still sleeping soundly in her bed at 8:30 this morning, I think I can assuredly say, "I'm good." =)
No, but seriously, maybe that is the exact reason I have found myself sitting here, thinking, writing, today. For a lot of years I wasn't good. For a lot of years I was searching for something, struggling with contentment. I think I may have even started a blog….(LOL). Six years in and I can finally say that God is bringing me to that place of finally "getting it," finally having those "awe…." moments. (That's great isn't it….now that my older two are in school? Oh well, here's hoping we do it right with the third child!)
What is my purpose? Oh how I hear new stay at home moms say that so often. They feel….like they should feel. Overwhelmed with the daily ins and outs of cleaning, laundry, wiping noses, wiping bottoms, cleaning, teaching, preparing 3 meals a day, did I say cleaning (one thing I know for sure…my house stayed a lot cleaner when no one is in it all day), but the area that is the hardest, the one no one really prepares you for, the lack of influence. And that's a two way street, especially for a teacher. The gaping whole that is left when you do not have classrooms of young minds to shape and mold, when you do not get to see, TANGIBLY, the growth of those children right in front of your face, and even worst, when you are not being influenced by anyone anymore….to be better, work harder, be given TANGIBLE feedback on how you are doing. It's tough, on so many levels, that it leaves us wondering what God's purpose for our lives are in simply staying at home and being a mom.
The other day I was driving in the car with my two year old daughter. Can I say….I LOVE driving in the car, preferably without kids, but let's be honest how often does that happen? We have fun in the car. We dance, we shake it, we sing, we become silly creatures in that beautiful mini van I said I would never own. But the one thing I do, especially by myself, is pray and praise. The other day I was in the car listening to these lyrics:
"So hold on tight, your ship is going downI was raising my hand and just singing and praising God because it was speaking so directly to my heart in that moment (another post for another day). And then there it was……my daughter, raising her hands.
In the storms of life, I won't let you drown.
It'll be alright if you can just hold on,
So just hold on
Rescue has come."
They're watching! In every thing we do, they are watching! Our influence is greater than we could ever imagine, and it is right in front of us. It has nothing to do with how hard we work, or how good of a job we do, or how many random people we may make some tiny imprint on……it's about how we love our children and how we love God. That THAT is enough. That THAT is what's important. And I'm confident that if nothing else…..that THAT is our purpose.