I cried after they had been gone merely 10 minutes, then again a few hours later, and I'm sure I've got another 2 or 3 more in me before I see them again tomorrow (I am not a crier by nature, but I am 6 months pregnant so it comes with the territory). I wanted this time of relaxation and recuperation so badly, which is why I asked for it in the first place. I dreamed of not having to cook, tidy, change diapers, entertain, and pacify tantrums for a whole day and it sounded glorious.
Now as I sit here very relaxed and very alone in our apartment, I am craving being needed and feeling exhausted because, as I have come to realize, that is who I am now. I am a mother and a wife; I am stretched to my limits, physically and emotionally daily and I love it.
Before this little stay-cation of mine, I would have had a hard time looking at the circumstances of my life and seeing the beauty in them. Now, God has shown me that what I thought were complications and trials were actually the blessings He has chosen to give me. And that is what they truly are: BLESSINGS!
In my bible study group, I am fortunate to be surrounded by so many beautiful, brave, and godly women. They share their souls every time we meet and I am so blessed by that. It has been said often in our group that when we are feeling the urge to ask God "why me? why now? why this?" we need to turn that in to thanksgiving for those problems. It's a crazy concept, but it really can turn any situation from hopeless to hopeful.
Below are my examples of the blessings I have taken for granted recently and have come to find a new appreciation for:
A marriage to fight for. Marriage is hard, there's no other way to put it. It can be ugly, tiresome, and down right frustrating. Instead of viewing it that way, though, I choose to be thankful that God brought me in to this union knowing we would face challenges and in turn challenging us to rise above them together. I thank God for showing me what love is and why we need to fight for it and it not be easy all the time.
A daughter to teach life's lessons to. Children in general are tough on a person's soul. We want so badly for them to be the best version of themselves they can be. But we have to take it in stride and at the end of the day, be grateful to have a child to love, care for, and teach along the way. So many people are denied that privilege and I think to myself "how selfish am I to complain about yet another tantrum when this little person could not even be in my life?" The thought makes me want to fall to my knees and thank God so much for the gift He has given us in our daughter, tantrums and all.
A home to make beautiful and comfortable. The cooking and the cleaning never seem to end. But what if I didn't have a home to do those things in? I'd be praying for one, that's for sure. So as I tidy up toys or scramble eggs, may I remember that this is a blessing to be able to do these things for my family instead of a curse I am plagued with.
A pregnancy to grow our family. Lastly, something I have prayed over continuously yet still find myself taking for granted is my pregnancy. Pregnancy wasn't easy for me the first time, and while it's been a bit better this go around, I still don't always appreciate it for what it really is. It's shameful to think of how selfish I am sometimes when it comes to pregnancy ailments. This is the most vital 9 months of my unborn daughter's life; why am I not treating it as such? Why am I wishing time would pass for my own sake? Because I am looking at it all wrong. This pregnancy is a direct gift from God and all the nausea, cramps, and heartburn will be worth it once she joins our family.
This is where my head is at tonight as I sit in my too-quiet apartment staring at my daughter's toys and wiping away lone tears as they fall down my face. It is no where near how I thought I'd be feeling on a child-free night, and while pregnancy hormones have a lot to do with it I'm sure, I know God has more to do with it and I am so in awe of that.
Take some time to list the things in your life that seem burdensome, and I challenge you to turn them in to a blessing. It may prove difficult, but hopefully it will make you search your heart and find praise in the unexpected.