Monday, January 07, 2013

Desperate Release

The timing could not be better.  Really.  I am averaging about two to three breakdowns a week.  I think that qualifies for "desperate".

The kids seem to be not able to move, much less play, if they are not right next to me.  When they do attempt to play... arguing, bickering, whining, and tears are too soon to follow.  I hear myself saying the same things over and over and seriously, I am tired of saying them.

I step into the bathroom to pee.  I start to think a thought of my own and within five seconds, someone is knocking on the door.  "Mommy...?  Are you in there?  (knock, knock, knock, pound, pound, pound.)  Mommy?  Mommy?"  "Y-E-S-S-S-S!"  "I am in here, trying to pee... for just two minutes," is most often my response.  Pause.  Fingers slide under the door.  I think about stepping on them and refrain from the evil!  Pause.  "Can I come in?"

"N-N-N-O-O-O!"  "I want to pee alone."  "Please."  "Just TWO MINUTES!"

I walked in from church today.  My purse still on my arm and only three feet in the door... and it started... "Can you work on the paper with me, can you run with me, will you be the coach, can we watch a movie, can you put another game on my player, what is for dinner, can you... can you... can we... can we...?"

I breath slowly.  Pause.  I release breath slowly from my lips and respond, "I am not even in the house yet... can you all just wait a moment before you attack me with requests?"

Most of the time I fall into thinking I am just a horrible mother who wants to hide from her kids in the closet.  I mean, I occasionally read blogs where moms think it is amazing to spend every waking moment engaged with their kids.  They think it is simply adorable that their kids color on the walls and leave mud hand prints everywhere.  They plan their entire lives around their kid's activities, play dates, sports activities, practices, over nights, youth events, and volunteering in their classrooms.  They eat their fast food dinner in the SUV at 9 p.m. many nights as they go from here to there and from there to here again.  And they think it is great.

Every birthday party is the grandest of affairs with party favors that would make Martha Stewart spitting mad with jealousy and decorations that people might even pay to see.  And they invite ALL 25 kids in the class. And their parents! 

They make snacks daily that look like this...

and this...


Don't get me wrong.  I love to bring delight and whimsy to the snack table ON OCCASION but not DAILY.

And they photograph themselves smiling all the time in the middle of messes saying how happy they are to be lying in the living room floor in the middle of smashed cheerios and legos and laundry.  And I really think they mean it.  I mean, I have no reason to think they don't.

I am like a deer in the headlights.

That is not great in my book.

That is a 3-D nightmare.

I feel itchy all over just thinking about they way my 4 year old's room looks and smells half the time.  I do not find it cute or delight in the baby-ness of him still sleeping in pullups and smelling like urine every morning.  I actually am WAY over it.  Way. Over it.

THAT is why I look at those blogs only once every 6 months instead of weekly.  I AM NOT THAT KIND OF MOM.

I like some order.  I like some balance.  I like some cleanliness.  Notice I said some.  I am far from a neat freak and my house is lived in.  But we windex hand prints instead of framing them and we pick up toys instead of living on top of them.  I like kids who are learning independence at an age appropriate time.  I like free time... where there is no place to be at a certain time.  I like margin and flexibility.  And I like kids being free to be kids.  

I very recently told my husband that I actually think we have done some sort of disservice to our kids as we do things together as a family ALL THE TIME.  They have no idea how to be alone.  I ask them to go play and they look at me like I have just banished them to Siberia for the winter months!  My four year old actually cries.  And then there is silence.  I will go and take a peak into his room and he will just be sitting there... doing nothing.

We play games as a family at least 4 to 5 times a week.  We go on family hikes.  We play wii bowling together as a family.  We go to Stone Mountain.  We travel.  We go to the movies.  We go to restaurants.  We go to my daughter's basketball games.  We go to my other daughter's Spirit nights.  We worship together.  We eat EVERY dinner meal together at the TABLE. (sans husband when he is on a trip) We craft together, make jewelry, cards, pictures.  We go to the bookstore together.  We go to the library together.  We do devotions together.  We pray together.  ALL. THE. TIME.  And much more.

So when I ask them to go play... they are like deer in the headlights.  And if there is a moment free... they are asking how it can be filled.  And I can't take it anymore.

Balance.  We need balance.  I need balance.

MANY of the things we do are WONDERFUL and I LOVE that we are a family that does things together.  But not at the expense of little to no time alone, little to no time alone with my husband, and kids having no idea to occupy themselves.

I have been trying to think of things that can change.  Things to pull back, things to keep, things to start.  Because something has to change.  I am fried. Cooked. Salted and peppered.  DONE.

SO... there is this book... HA HA!  I have not read it, obviously.  It is being released today.  Desperate, by Sarah Mae and Sally Clarkson.  I met both of these precious and lovely women at the Allume conference.  I was struck deeply with Sally Clarkson's love for Sarah Mae.  Sally saw Sarah Mae at a conference in the past.  She saw her pouring out to everyone and everything.  Then she saw her standing off to the side, alone.  Sally went over and asked, "Who pours into you?"  I guess Sarah Mae's answer may have been, "I don't know," or dare I even suggest, "No one."  Whatever her response, Sally Clarkson said, "I want to pour into you."

Can you imagine?  Can you imagine the gift and holy blessing of a wonderful, loving, godly woman coming up to you and asking to pour themselves into you?  Offering to love you, mentor you, hold you, wipe your tears, make you laugh, listen to your disappointments and fears, never judge, offer support and advice and steer you to the living God... to the throne of Jesus?

Wow.  I sinned.  Right there.  Jealousy swept over me and I whined inside, "I want a Sally Clarkson!"

So both of these women have joined their hearts, their love, and their passion for moms and have written this book.  From the website:

Desperate is for those who love their children to the depths of their souls but who have also curled up under their covers, fighting back tears, and begging God for help. It’s for those who have ever wondered what happened to all their ideals for what having children would be like. For those who have ever felt like all the “experts” have clearly never had a child like theirs. For those who have prayed for a mentor. For those who ever felt lost and alone in motherhood.

I am ordering it.  TODAY!

Are you a tired mother?  Do you have feelings that you dare not share?  Do you look in the mirror and wish you had not just yelled at your fighting kids?  Do you feel alone?  Do you wish you could just pee alone?

You can order a copy of this book HERE
 And if you order one or more copies this week, there are gifts!  What mom would not like a little gift to arrive with a book full of hope?

The fact is, we are not alone.  My guess is there are probably a fair number of moms out there who relate to daily frustrations and challenges in parenting and in trying to balance a very busy life. There are probably more moms than me who are not rolling in fields of motherly bliss all the time. 

So if you are one of those moms or you know one of those moms... share the link for Desperate and let's read this book together!

Be blessed.  Be encouraged.


  1. Anonymous11:47 AM

    YES yes yes...I am the SAME way....I have to have my space and feel like exploding when I am pummeled with requests all at once..the thing that has been an issue here is the bickering/fighting bt the drives me BATTY...I think bc I am an only child and never had to deal with that..I have to have some order too...and some space...I identified with everything you said girl...maybe I need this book too cause I find myself feeling guilty about feeling that way...Thanks for sharing and being transparent :)

    1. Thank you for sharing! You have no idea how it blesses me to know I am not alone. Sometimes I feel like I must be the worst mother ever... then I realize I just might one of the honest ones! LOL I LOVE alone time and being of mother of three almost strips you of any time alone. I am thinking it is time to drop the guilt and make myself ONE of my priorities again... before all fall apart. :0) Order the book... you will be blessed! Order today from WellSpring and you get a free journal with it! :0)

    2. DAYSPRING... not WellSpring... sorry.

  2. Dawn,

    I am almost certain that every single one of those "perfect" moms will be running to get the book.... Who does not want to pee alone? =D

    1. It is all about the small things! You take what you can! I love the way you make me laugh!

  3. Totally feel you on the amazing Pinterest snack thing...I immediately unfollow someone's board if they start pinning stuff like that. I had to stop getting all the parenting magazines too for the same reason.

    I have so many books on my bookshelf right now but whenever you finish this one, I hope you let us know how it was. The two books I read by Sally Clarkson actually made me feel a tad inadequate and overwhelmed.

    1. You are wise. Stop looking at it... that helps! :0) I DO go to Pinterest when I want something SPECIAL... like a birthday snack... first or last day of school... a Fall treat or something like that... but the whole daily thing is crazy! I mean, the poor spouses of these kids when they grow up! Can you imagine what a meal is going to have to look like!? LOL

      I will totally let you know how this book goes. I have a review to do on another one I have yet to read too.

      I hate books by Sally Clarkson made you feel anything less than FAB! She is the sweetest thing. I just recently met her and heard her speak at a conference. I felt such a mentor and loving heart in her. Hopefully this one will be different... if you are ever able to climb out of your "To Read" hole one day. Oh to have hours a day to read! Bliss. My shelf overfloweth as well. Oh well... one book at a time. :0)

    2. Oh I can totally tell she's sweet and loving and I love that she has a heart for motherhood. I just read about her amazingly deep conversations with her kids and the spectacular trips they took all the time and felt like I could just never match that level of wonderfulness. :)

    3. Ha... got it! :0) I know how that feels too! We try to do a cool trip and the bickering and fighting and me wanting to get in the car with a stranger makes me ask: "Really... are those epic, perfect, singing in the car, and children rolling in gratefulness family road trips for REAL?" HA HA. I often say, "We need a camera crew!" Reality TV has nothing on us!

  4. Anonymous9:29 PM

    I laughed and relate so much as I read this one Dawn! I simply do NOT go on pinterest or facebook anymore for those reasons!!!!! It's just too much of "look how great I am". I'm interested in real, authentic life and people. I'm getting too old and with my aging self, I have so much less patience for people like that. With time shortages already, I want to invest in the unseen... in things with eternal value, what really matters!!!

    I also get what you're saying about doing everything together as a family and not having much margin time - a HUGE struggle I have too. I feel like I get tiny amounts of "left over" time. It's hard to find that balance of having enough time for myself while giving and providing well for my family... I'll be so interested to hear if you like the book. Kim

    1. Kim, your words ring so true. I struggle all the time with trying to balance my investing in things unseen with wanting to paint dressers and add beadboard or wood planks to my kitchen island... along with quality time with the kids, the husband, and hopefully some friends! "Balance" needs to be hand in hand with my word, "Abide" for this year. God has given me a heart to create and I love to beautify things... but all too often it is at the expense of time with Him. :0( Abide and Balance... great goals for 2013!

      And I will so let you know what I think of the book. :0)

  5. Anonymous2:41 PM

    I so agree with this post. I beat myself up constantly about needing space from my kids, but why wouldn't I? I am with kids ALL day at school! I have to have time with other adults some time, and definitely some time where no asks me to do anything for them! LOL And, I have also felt like the worst mother in the world on many occasions. Am I doing this right? Do they know that they are loved? Am I neglecting responsibilities as a mom because our house is messy all the time? Do my children see the love of Christ in me? Do we talk about God enough, pray together enough, etc., etc. I totally relate to you here. Thanks for sharing! -Jennifer

    1. Jennifer, I am starting to see more and more clearly that it is no accident mother's hear such constant lies... look at what we hold in our hands. And the enemy wants to take us out. I am starting to find comfort in knowing I am not alone. And neither are you.
      Thank you for sharing.


Thanks for sharing your thoughts!