“The homemaker has the ultimate career. All other careers exist for one purpose only – and that is to support the ultimate career. ”
– C.S. Lewis
7th grade drill team tryouts. I still remember them. Not because I tried out, but because I didn’t. I had multiple friends who tried out, and I remember watching them practice and being so jealous because it looked like so much fun. So why didn’t I try out? Honestly, it was because I was terrified. I was pretty sure I had the moves, but I was terrified of failure. And when I saw my friends make the team, I hated myself for not trying. And right then, I decided. I decided that it’s better to try and fail than to never try at all. Because trying and failing never feels as bad as not trying at all. And trust me, trying and failing can feel pretty bad. I’ve done a lot of it since the 7th grade.
In my life right now, my first priority is my family. I only have my kids here with me for a few short years. After they are gone, I will have all kinds of time to do whatever I want – but they are here, with me, for only such a short time. I never want to regret not spending enough time with them. My family is the most important thing to me, so everything else I do, must be structured around them. Now don’t get me wrong, I love having “me” time and we work hard to have date nights. But in the decisions that really matter, and in the day to day life, I work hard to make sure my family comes first.
I’ve spent a lot of time this month trying to figure out how to restructure to keep my business and yet keep my family first. There are still a lot of decisions to be made. I am not good at making decisions.
I’ve spent this month correcting math homework, making bread, painting for the school play, shuttling to gymnastics and scouts and activity days and play-dates. I’ve hugged and laughed and at times, yelled (sometimes with the windows open! arrgggg!). I’ve made lunches, dinners and cleaned endless dishes. The laundry is never ending (honestly, you people with a bazillion kids, I don’t know how you keep up with it all!). I’ve run to the school with forgotten homework and shuttled to orthodontist appointments. I sang them sleep and told them I loved them. And all of those things make up the word homemaker. How I hate that word. I despise the way people look at you when you say it. And I despise the fact that there is no monetary value associated with it. And to be quite honest, I don’t love the laundry or the dishes either. But what I love about it, is the in between moments. When you least expect it, something is said, or a question is asked and you have this moment when everything else fades and the conversation and connection are the thing. And that thing is the moment that connects all the other mundane things together and makes it all worthwhile.
Jordan told me this month that sometimes she worries about Global Warming and if that is how the world is going to end. And she wonders if maybe that is how God planned the world to end. And then she told me that sometimes she feels like it is her job to do something about Global Warming to make it all better. We didn’t have a lot of time to talk, we were almost at gymnastics. And I reassured her that I believe that God will guide us in life to those things that are most important for us to do and if God intends for her to do something big, he will let her know. But in the meantime, she should just work on the things that she can do (things she already does), like turning off the lights and recycling. And her burden was lifted and she became my carefree little 8 year old once again.
I’ll be the first to admit that we don’t have the perfect little family. I yell too much and am probably too strict. We have our faults and our ups and downs just like any other family. But we love each other and we strive to give each other our best each and every day. And we strive to live life with everything we’ve got and with no regrets, because this life is too short to be filled with regrets.
ps. this photo was taken at point lobos (an all time family favorite place) on a cold, foggy and rainy day. I put the camera on a picnic table, propped up by a twig and set it on timer. The colors that day, saturated by the rain, were so amazing. I fell in love with our beautiful California coastline all over again.