Invisible Mom

This came to me in my email this morning and I thought I would share it with all of us “invisible moms”.

Invisible Mother……

It all began to make sense, the blank stares, the lack of response, the way one of the kids will walk into the room while I’m on the phone and ask to be taken to the store.

Inside I’m thinking, ‘Can’t you see I’m on the phone?’

Obviously, not

No one can see if I’m on the phone, or cooking, or sweeping the floor, or even standing on my head in the corner, because no one can see me at all.

I’m invisible. The invisible Mom. Some days I am only a pair of hands, nothing more: Can you fix this? Can you tie this? Can you open this?

Some days I’m not a pair of hands; I’m not even a human being. I’m a clock to ask, ‘What time is it?’ I’m a satellite guide to answer, ‘What number is the Disney Channel?’ I’m a car to order, ‘Right around 5:30, please.’ at these were the hands that once held books and the eyes that studied history and the mind that graduated sum a cum laude – but now they had disappeared into the peanut butter, never to be seen again. She’s going;
she’s going; she is gone!

One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the return of a friend from England .

Janice had just gotten back from a fabulous trip, and she was going on and on about the hotel she stayed in.

I was sitting there, looking around at the others all put together so well. It was hard not to compare and feel sorry for myself. I was feeling pretty pathetic, when Janice turned to me with a beautifully wrapped package, and said, ‘I brought you this.’

It was a book on the great cathedrals of Europe .

I wasn’t exactly sure why she’d given it to me until I read her inscription:

‘To Charlotte , with admiration for the greatness of what you are building when no one sees.’

In the days ahead I would read – no, devour – the book. And I would discover what would become for me, four life-changing truths, after which I could pattern my work:

No one can say who built the great cathedrals – we have no record of their names.

These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see finished.

They made great sacrifices and expected no credit.

The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw everything.

A legendary story in the book told of a rich man who came to visit the cathedral while it was being built, and he saw a workman carving a tiny bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and asked the man, ‘Why are you spending so much time carving that bird into a beam that will be covered by the roof? No one will ever see it.’ And the workman replied, ‘Because God sees.’

I closed the book, feeling the missing piece fall into place.

It was almost as if I heard God whispering to me, ‘I see you, Charlotte. I see the sacrifices you make every day, even when no one around you does. No act of kindness you’ve done, no sequin you’ve sewn on, no cupcake you’ve baked, is too small for me to notice and smile over. You are building a great cathedral, but you can’t see right now what it will become.’

At times, my invisibility feels like an affliction. But it is not a disease that is erasing my life.

It is the cure for the disease of my own self-centeredness. It is the antidote to my strong, stubborn pride.

I keep the right perspective when I see myself as a great builder. As one of the people who show up at a job that they will never see finished, to work on something that their name will never be on.

The writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals could ever be built in our lifetime because there are so few people willing to sacrifice to that degree.

When I really think about it, I don’t want my son to tell the friend he’s bringing home from college for Thanksgiving, ‘My Mom gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes homemade pies, and then she hand bastes a turkey for three hours and presses all the linens for the table.’ That would mean I’d built a shrine or a monument to myself. I just want him to want to come home. And then, if there is anything more to say to his friend, to add, ‘you’re gonna love it there.’

As mothers, we are building great cathedrals. We cannot be seen if we’re doing it right.

And one day, it is very possible that the world will marvel, not only at what we have built, but at the beauty that has been added to the world by the sacrifices of invisible women.

Great Job, MOM!

This little email Worked for Me for an encouragement and pick up. Maybe it will Work for you too!

When Life Hits, PRAY!

Life has been strange lately. I have not been posting on either blog much, not getting done what I want to around the house and not getting much sleep.

Why?

Life. I have a wonderful husband and dear family, none of that has changed. In fact, not sure how I would get along without them!

However, over the last while a lot of stress has been on us.  How does your family handle stress? We pray and talk.

For some time now we have been deeply concerned about where our church was going. The preaching has not been Biblical, yet there has been a small amount of truth in there and then nothing. The truth is usually watered down and nothing deep to put your mouth into for Spiritual food.  For some this would mean changing churches. For us, my husband is also employed there and we are not able to get a job that even pays as good as this in this area.  For a long time we have been praying and talking about it, and we have seen the preaching going more and more away from what the Scripture says. Verses taken out of context, no following the rules of interpretation and apostasy being taught as right.  On top of all that, he was told he is overpaid and will get no raises a year ago, and yet they pile more work on him. Many weeks I need to go in on Saturdays and help him get it all done for Sunday, no pay of course.

We have also had things going crazy around the house. Things breaking, acting up or otherwise a problem. Goats needing new fencing. A granddaughter coming for the summer (YAY) but that meant taking things out of the storage room so she had a bed room (well worth the effort, she is a joy to have here!)

It has been hot here in Texas, we have had weeks of 100 or more degrees. I never knew that heat could: make the breakers on the electric pole pop off or make large patio doors explode. Believe me, it will!!

I was in the dining room with the little granddaughter and there was a “gun shot” sound and the glass door came down. Glass was everywhere! I will try to put up the pictures.

Well, we prayed more! We now had a 6.5 X6.5 hole in the side of the house!

The results:

  • Husband quit his job yesterday and will be going to work for less pay somewhere else. He will need to hold down a second part time job, but we will get there.
  • We are trying to keep the box on the pole open so it will not overheat and blow as much.
  • The goats have some of their fencing done, but not as much as he wanted to have done now.
  • The milking stand is almost made. (told you I have a great husband!)
  • My 12 year old granddaughter is here and we are so enjoying her!
  • We have a new door, window and side to the house and when it is finished I will even (finally) have a screen door!

When life comes at you fast, remember, Pray! God has the answers.

Loss of Income Help!

I need help. Since this is Frugal Friday I thought I would ask for ideas here.

It appears that our income may be cut by a third or more in the next few weeks, by the beginning of July anyway. Right now we are struggling, and this will make things even tighter.

I am not a person to spend wildly and have always tried to be fairly frugal and wise in our spending, however, this will be pushing it to the limit for awhile.

Have any of you had this happen? What were the first things you did to make ends meet on what you were getting?

I get all the frugal blogs, websites and newsletters I can find and have been working on what I can long before this happened, so I am feeling like I am going to need to cut in some unfamiliar ways and want to see what others who have faced this have done.

How have any of you learned what is your place in the WAHM area? I am sure I can do something, yet feel very uncreative right now. I assume it is the stress we have been under for some time, since I am normally a creative person.

SO… help me out dear bloggers! Those that work from home in any way, what do you do and how did you figure out to do it?

For frugal ideas, and I will check them all! go to Biblical Womanhood!

Just too busy

I do not know about you, but life can get pretty busy. Many of us moms and grammies are getting overwhelmed and feeling like we are not getting the time we need to do things. I know I am.

I have an 18 month old granddaughter here all day. She is a sweetheart and I would not trade her for anything, nor my time with her. As all of you know, this means keeping busy.

Take yesterday. I tried to send an email and she was right here by me, I was looking at her and talking to her as I worked. Then I hear a noise. Not a familiar noise. She had reached into the corner, grabbed a plastic bag full, yes very full, of packing peanuts. What I heard was her tearing the bag opened and peanuts flying everywhere. Before I could get up she began walking on them and the more I tried to get her the funnier that crushing under her feet seemed to her.

I dealt with that, and went out into the kitchen, her with me. I started cleaning up and look up to check on her and she is in the middle of my dining room table. Now let me tell you about my table.

It is full of stuff! I had gotten several bags of freecycled fabric and had it sorted on the table. I also had some of my husbands stuff on the table and in the middle of the table was an ice cream pail filled with diatamatious earth.  This was food safe for using on the animals food and keeping the bugs from our pantry and around the feed outside. To know the texture of this stuff, think corn starch.

Well, remember I said she was in the middle of the table? Remember where I said the DE was?  I now had fabric and baby and Rick’s tools filled with powder.

I am sure your days are much the same. How do we get time to do what we want? Sew, write our blog, read, crafts?

If you are like me, if you do not get a certain amount of time just for you it wears on you. I get depressed, feel a bit useless and the creative part of me just cries out and takes over.

My nights are often filled with other things. Bible Study, I work 1 night and weekends are working and other things even though I do not have the baby.

Some things I found help me, but not totally.

  • have a set nap time for the child. I put her down and if she does not sleep she will play or yell, but it is her bed time and she knows it.
  • try to have age relevant things for them to do. If they are bored they are going to be more demanding. Scout is getting into more so I need to get more grown up toys and puzzles etc. I think she does not like the toys here since she does not have to think to use them any more.
  • Do not go by age on boxes, toys etc. Go by your child’s development. Kids are not the same at a certain age. Look at the toy and see what is needed to work it. Is it a challenge for your child, but doable? Is it too easy? Too hard?  Make more noise than you or your child may want? look it over!
  • Make sure your child understands “mommy needs to sit down”. A child can understand when they hit a certain age. Scout understands now, but does not always want to! I give her a coloring page and I sit down too.
  • Use nap time for mommy time. Let go of the idea you need to work, do something for you. Work will always be there, but if we stress and fret about getting everything done at nap time we may not be there. Stress and not relaxing and taking our time plays a big toll on the body, mind and spirit.  Take care of yours!

I am still not getting things done that need to get done and need to work on more ways to find me time as well.  How do you handle it? What do you do when you have preschoolers at home and need to get things done? If you run an etsy business or other WAHM how do you accomplish it all and not feel shot?

Let me know!