Life with kids often involves the unexpected. This year's unexpected was two of my kids having a stomach bug on Christmas Eve, in between the church part and the go-to-bed-so-Santa-can-come part. It was definitely a long night for both the boys and for us. It got me to thinking though, what in life really does go according to plan? I was so thankful that although the sickness was rough on them, it was over by morning and they got to try to rest up and enjoy Christmas.
The day after Christmas kind of always has a little bit of a let down feeling for me. It's all over...it's that strange week of the year that I have to cram in family time, end of the year business decisions, reflections over the past year and contemplate goals for the new one. It can be hard to carve out family time, yet at the same time give myself some head space to deal with all of these thoughts. I struggle to say, but lately I have felt a bit in survival mode. All these different intentions I had set for myself kept being challenged or changed....much as our Christmas had been changed with taking care of the kids coming before the fun. I keep being hard on myself that I really should be able to do it all and wear a smile, but it's just not possible sometimes. I am often reminded of my humanity.
I loved a passage I read today by Joanna Gaines, "I realized that my determination to make things perfect meant I was chasing an empty obsession all day long. Nothing was ever going to be perfect the way I had envisioned it in the past. Did I want to keep spending my energy on that effort, or did I want to stop out of that obsession and to enjoy my kids, maybe allowing myself to get messy right along with them in the process?...It all came down to a mind shift in which I asked myself, 'What am I going for in life?" Yes Mrs. Joanna Magnolia Homes Gaines herself wrestled with so many things common to the modern mama heart, in this passage speaking specifically about trying to keep a tidy home with four little people in it all day. I can totally relate, with this being one of the many daily things that gets to me. It was so encouraging to read her words today and put a finger on a few things I've been feeling. Life within a family, a business, and relationships is constantly changing and evolving. We have to be willing to evolve with it and accept new seasons that we are in. For example, I am back in the toddler stage again along with having older school-aged children. If I am honest, I have never been one to love the toddler stage anyway. They're adorable but B's into EVERYTHING and I can barely keep him safe in a day, much less be productive! We have to let go of certain constraints and not be so hard on ourselves where it's not the priority. So give me a few more days to contemplate what this looks like for my 2017 and I will get back with you my friends! Happy day after christmas!
As for the Magnolia Story, if you love Chip & Jo in the show, the book is worth the read! It only took me a couple hours of really reading to get it done so it's perfect if you're on a holiday in the next week!