Well, I say no reason, but really it's for hundreds of miniscule reasons. None of which should affect a full grown adult this way, but built up huge and high they're grinding me into dust.
I'm a very linear person. I like things that have a beginning, a middle, and an end. I can get through pretty difficult situations as long as they have a beginning, middle, and end.
But that is not motherhood. It's all middle. Day after day of middle.
It's circles. Endless circles. Diaper, coffee, oatmeal, coffee, don't touch, diaper, crayons, laundry, laundry, nap, dishes, diaper, coffee, dinner, dishes, bedtime, lather, rinse, repeat.
I hate circles. Reason tells me these teeny, inconsequential circles will link up to create time, purpose, and direction, but... I can't see that right now.
So, you see, it becomes easy for me to throw myself into projects. Projects can be measured. Projects can be admired and appreciated by others. Projects allow me to stretch my creativity and intellect. Projects have a beginning. A middle. And an end.
I've been learning a lot about gratitude lately. Not contentment. If you search after this mysterious contentment you won't find it. You'll just be reminded of everything you're not content with along the way. But gratitude - that's not a state of being, that's a job. A project, even. And I can get behind projects.
I started filling a notebook with things I'm grateful for.
My beautiful daughter
Her safe birth
Her amazing sleep schedule
Her continued health
I thought I'd get a few things down, maybe come back to it each day.
Marrying my best friend
Not having to work
A husband who really listens to my needs and does his best to fill them
Before I knew it I was filling page, after page.
Having the time to make whatever I want
Living on a quiet road that Jaina can play on
Our great church
It just keeps going and going! And I haven't even gotten into the minutiae yet (like coffee or the fact that all of our appliances are working), or the specific moments and events for which I'm grateful (like Jaina answering back "iluhyou" when I put her to bed tonight). And there could be endless pages talking about everything that Jesus has done for me.
Made me his daughter
Forgiven me for everything I've ever done or will do
Died for me!
I know I've heard Psalm 46 plenty of times before, but it hit me like a ton of bricks the other day. Read the whole thing cause there is so much in there, but verse 5 is my favorite.
"God is in the midst of her;
she shall not be moved.
God will help her when the morning dawns."
Good thing I'm not a spontaneous person cause I would go out and get that tattooed across my chest right now. This needs to be my screen saver. This needs to be spray painted across the bathroom mirror. This needs to be spelled out in the sky with planes.
He is in the midst of oatmeal.
He is in the midst of crayons.
He is in the midst of diapers.
He is in the midst of the laundry, laundry, laundry, laundry.
He is in the midst of every interaction I have with my daughter that no one else sees.
And so, it matters! Every meal I make helps her grow. Every walk outside is a chance to learn. Every book I read aloud gets her closer to reading herself. I may have to do those things hundreds more times, but He will help me get up and do them every morning.
My feelings towards dishes and laundry and vacuuming and dusting still haven't changed. Yes, those things will never be finished; there will always be more to do. But when you're filling up page, after page, after page of amazing things that God has done, you don't really think about it.
That's one project that I don't mind working on forever.