My Dark Circles
As a woman we carry everything on our shoulders. [Men, I may be over-generalizing here, but I know many kickass women and if they don’t fit all of these scenarios; they certainly understand most.] We make the task lists and we also complete them, but our to dos are usually finished last or incomplete. We know where everything is with a minute of rewind in our brain, but we can’t find a thought for ourselves. We are the nurturers and the boo-boo healers even when we are hurt. We are the needed even when we are in need. And this doesn’t just apply to motherhood, it applies to our lives as wives and even members of our family, sometimes even your work environment.
When, in the midst of all of that, do we find time for ourselves? To complete our to-dos. To find a minute to process our own thoughts. To nurture our own wounds. To have a shoulder to cry on. I know, from my own experience, I always wanted to be strong. I always wanted to appear like I have it all together. I always wanted to be the best wife and the best mother. I didn’t want to be caught in a weak moment. But my husband can surely vouch for the fact that he’s seen me at my wits end, on my knees with nothing left to give of myself. Yet still, I woke up each morning to provide for the babies who couldn’t provide for themselves and put them to sleep each night even if I was in tears during their prayer time.
Ladies, I admire you. I admire the face you put on for your family and friends. I admire the endless smiles you give your kids even when you want to pull your hair out. I admire that you cut calories because you don’t have energy to workout. I admire that you sleep less so they can sleep more. I admire the time you invest to being the best you in all areas of your life…but are you empty, lost and/or lonely at the end of the day?
I have seen my reflection at the end of all of the give and I saw the dark circles under my eyes and the lack of “care” for myself. I have sat alone shaking thinking I have nothing left. I have been scared of the thoughts in my own head; because our mind can be our biggest battlefield. I have questioned my entire existence and the value of it. But my confusion and my mistakes led to miracles because my God had a mission over my life and I found revelation in my circumstances. One of the pastors who speaks straight to my soul, Steven Furtick, said it this way and I found it perfect to my situation. “I am not stuck, I am stationed.”
I could be the stone or the driftwood stuck in the waters way or I could be a piece of art that is admired day by day. I have great purpose. I have great value. I have a great mission. And all of these things aren’t areas that I HAVE to do – they are areas that I GET to do. The power of perspective over your situation has immeasurable capabilities over your mind, but you have to be feeding it with the right information, the right people, the right encouragement, the right sound, even the right music.
I pray that wherever you are…maybe elbow deep in diapers everyday feeling like you have no existence to the outside world – I promise you, that little child sees you as their entire being and you will find moments in the coming years where you have a chance to breathe and yet you will be wishing them small all over again; allow them to be a PART of your identity, but they don’t have to be your entire identity. Or maybe you are single and have yet to meet Mr. Right, yet all of the women around you are married and having kids. Invest the time and energy into yourself to be the best you, the whole you, so that you are more than capable of loving someone in all of your entirety; he will come.
No matter your situation, know that you are not alone in your emotions. That even the people who appear to have it all together have their moments of weakness. Those weak points for me have been my defining growth points. And I could have let them break me. I could have thrown in the towel and sang the “poor me poor my” song, but I didn’t.
After what seemed like a long time of tears, my well was empty and the place I found fullness was in my God. He who had never left my side and knew all along that I would find strength in and through my failures. And on this side of eternity, I am blessed beyond measure to have a man who I have bared my entire soul to, every crevice, and yet he still loves me through and through.Find your comfort.