But the truth of the matter is, I could not positively answer her question. My honest answer was... um, I guess, maybe, sometimes, like, between the hours of 7am and 4pm. When I really thought about her question, I realized it was one probably only another mom or dad, possibly as close to my shoes as she is, could have the honesty and wisdom to ask. 2.5 weeks ago I could not have imagined being asked, or asking, that question. But yesterday, the very act of being asked seemed to free me to honestly reflect and answer.
The truth of the matter is since my 1:30pm post on Monday, things have been more difficult. Elynor hasn't necessarily done anything different, but my emotions and fatigue seem to have gotten the best of me. By Monday evening I was wiped and had a minor meltdown (well, maybe major, you should ask Ryan). My recovering body was hurting and Elynor was screaming as we tried to get out the door for small group... and... AHHHHH!!!! as soon as Ryan walked in the door I lost it. We decided I should not only stay home that night, but I should take several steps back and just relax at home this week, not only limiting the outings, but forcing myself to just sit and sleep. Limit the chores, limit the visitors... let my body heal and get to know my daughter.
I did my best with this yesterday, but again, by the time Ryan got home, I was in meltdown mode. Maybe it has something to do with it getting dark around that time. Yes, of course, by that time I'm tired, etc. But that's not going to change. I think it has more to do with my attitude. For some reason, by the end of the day I find myself just wanting to get away... clock out, if you will, just like any other job. When I snap to the realization that there's no clocking out - that it just keeps going - that's when I go into bitter, bad attitude (mean to Ryan) mode. I'll spare you all the specific negative thoughts I have and words I say to my husband and simply say this is not how I want to live.
During some counsel from Ryan and some prayer last night, I was reminded of the following truths. So today I start a new day of motherhood with the following as my guides. Do I expect to never meltdown again? No. Do I expect to automatically start always liking or even loving this? No. But do I expect to make the best of this phase - the portion God has granted me - as much as I can? Yes. That's what I want to model for my daughter and really what living a joyful life is all about.
"Whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus." Colossians 3:17 (written by the apostle Paul, who spent much of his ministry in prison... no matter how much I don't like this new gig, it's definitely better than living in a prison.)
"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men (or baby...)." Colossians 3:23
"The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control." Galatians 5:22-23 (joy and patience are my focii this week...)
from a fave song... "The joy of the Lord is my strength..."