Hi Friends, I haven’t written in a little while because I have not been feeling very well. I have been grappling with some of my health limitations and struggling to know how to talk about growing as a homemaker when I have not had the energy to do the things I really feel need to be done for me to feel okay about my homemaking.
This morning, I decided maybe this is actually the perfect time to talk about it. I’m weak and struggling around some circumstances I can’t control and I know all of us are there sometimes. How do we reflect God’s heart for home, marriage, and family when we are not doing so well? When we don’t want to get out of bed? When we are in pain?
I have an endocrine disorder (PCOS) and a uterine disorder (adenomyosis). These aren’t that big of a deal, but they do impact my daily life, and I have to work and live around them. I won’t go into the long explanation of what those conditions are because that’s not the aim of this post. What I’m mainly dealing with is imbalanced hormones, painful ovarian cysts, dysfunctional monthly cycles that cause pronounced discomfort and fatigue, and a painful swollen uterus. I’ve been working with a gynecological endocrinologist, a nutritionist, and a personal trainer to help me manage these things. Most of the time I’m fine and it doesn’t bother me too much, but in December I tried a different dosage of hormone and it wasn’t so good. We’re working it out and adjusting.
This morning I stayed in bed till almost 9:00 and played with my daughter there because I woke with pain and didn’t want to get vertical. I’m not trying to illicit pity (I’m okay and my heart is full) but rather to illustrate my limits and weakness, my humanness.
When I have pain days like today, I am not able to do all the things I planned to do. I will need to sit down in between things and go slower than I like. I will need to rest and leave things undone. Other days it’s not a factor, I have lots of days like that, but today this is my portion.
As I dressed this morning, I prayed, “Father, please help me to reflect your heart for home, marriage, and family today, when I don’t feel good, when I don’t feel like I have it in me. Help me to do this in weakness.”
Do I have sisters out there? Sisters who sometimes just don’t have it in you? Are you trying to serve the Lord in your family during a rough patch?
Here’s my best for you: Flowers and friends are beautiful. They help.
A little over a week ago I sent this text to a couple friends, and the women in my church community group:
So there it is. I had just been trying to wrap my head around my limits and how to handle everything on my plate and I crashed a little. Maybe you’re a serene Christian full of faith who never crashes. Maybe you think I’m a little pathetic. You’re right. I’m displaying weakness here and it’s pretty damn anti-american right? I’m okay with that. It’s the truth. I’m a woman who loves Jesus and her family, but my faith wavers, I falter, and I crash sometimes.
But you know what? Friends are beautiful. They paused their day, prayed for me, sent me camaraderie, compassion, and encouragement to trust God. They offered to help me if I needed it, but mostly I just needed to say I was struggling and have them pray over me. I had sat down on my bathroom floor with my bible to pray and I knew I could use help (it sounds more dramatic than it is, I just have 728 square feet and there’s nowhere to go for privacy). I was not winning the battle that day but as I sat there teary-eyed over the kindness of my friends, I was able to pray a deep honest prayer and God heard me. He encouraged me with scripture, Psalm 86, and I’ve been reading it every day since. You should read it too.
I felt his presence in a way I hadn’t in a while because I confessed my weakness, frustration, and fear to him and allowed friends to help, even though it meant looking as weak as I am.
I snapped this picture because sometimes beautiful moments don’t look like I think they should. I wanted to remember that God met me on the floor in my frailty. This is what fighting and winning looks like sometimes.
This last weekend I was at a ladies retreat with my church and it was more of the same. I didn’t talk about my stuff to a bunch of people or anything, but I did see clearly how God was working through the sincerity and openness of these sisters in Christ, to lift up the faltering among us, which I think is most of us. I’m relatively new to this church and I don’t have many deep relationships yet, but when you have Jesus in common, you can still share and love with courage, and let people really see you. He’s there. Right there.
On the grounds of the camp, on the beautiful, stormy, northern Oregon coast, I was startled to find early daffodils standing boldly in defiance of January, and beginning to bloom anyway. They were the perfect metaphor for the weekend, for this season in my life. They brought me joy, and a little rebellious spark that said, “Screw you January!! I’m growing anyway! I’m going to bloom anyway and you can’t stop me!!!” The “January” of my circumstances is no match for the grace and mercy of my Father.
Yesterday, after my doctor’s appointment, I bought some for myself.
Flowers are beautiful.
Here they are, on my windowsill in my kitchen, which needs to be cleaned yet again. They help me feel brave and hopeful that things change and God can be trusted with my life, my salvation, my house, and my body.
Friends and Flowers are Beautiful.
If you are having a tough day, let your friends love you, and maybe find some flowers for your heart. It helps.
May your aprons and bibles both be well-worn,
The Remedial Homemaker