These are the things on my mind right now, thoughts swirling around, intertwining, and fighting for my attention…
I read a quote today from President Hinckley: "We should work at our responsibility as parents as if everything in life counted on it, because in fact everything in life does count on it.”
This thought underscores something I have been thinking about lately. I am not a terrible parent, and in some ways I am a fabulous mom. But in other ways, I stink. I lack self control at times and yell – something my own parents never did! Often, I find myself simply not knowing the wise way to handle a situation, or what kind of consequence would actually teach my kids what they need to learn. The whole goal is to guide and teach them to become capable, successful, emotionally intelligent, hard-working, responsible, respectful adults, right? Just like any other parent, I want to give them the best of what my parents gave me, and much more. I want them to be better prepared for life than I was in certain areas. I want them to want to do the right things for the right reasons. But I often find myself at a loss. How do I handle this situation, or that one? And more often than not, I don’t have time to think it through or even ponder it, because there are 50 million things pulling for my attention – things and people that cannot be neglected! However, in light of this quote from President Hinckley, I feel that I must focus myself more on improving my mom skills and tuning myself into the real needs of my children. I guess I have never been great at multi-tasking. It comes naturally to some, but not to me. How do I concentrate on so many vital things? Impossible. However, I WILL make this a higher priority.
Another thing on my mind – health. I started to make significant progress in 2013, but lately have dropped the ball. We’re not all sitting around eating twinkies, mind you, or even eating fast food. But I know this is an area where I have been slacking – not out of laziness, but maybe out of exhaustion! I can do better.
I want to be prepared. Self sufficient. We are so far away from this goal in almost every conceivable way, although I suppose we are better off than many because of the small preparations that we have already made. I just don’t know where to begin. It is absolutely overwhelming to me! One of the most significant dilemmas I face in this realm is food storage. Food that stores well is mostly crap – or at least lower quality than what I want to feed my family. I am ok with us all living on sub-par food in an emergency situation! The problem is that you are supposed to rotate the food…and eat it regularly. What to do?
Order and organization have never been my fortes. But it is slightly ridiculous how much organizing (and cleaning) I really need to do. Why am I typing this right now? Good question. I need to get my buns off the computer and start cleaning like a mad woman while the baby is asleep! My problem in this area is that I never seem to manage more than the bare minimum. IF I am able to keep the kitchen clean, the floor semi-vacuumed, and all the stuff put away, or mostly put away (including laundry) – even for just a short while - that is a small miracle. So I never really make it to the organizing, because I never get past the cleaning first! Deep cleaning is preceded by surface cleaning, right? I literally do not know how I will ever make progress on cleaning out the garage, or even just a closet, when it takes all of my best efforts to simply “maintain.”
These are just the largest, most pressing concerns on my mind. There are at least a hundred more, not the least of which is this decaying society. And I am so incredibly concerned about our freedoms being snatched away…because our government is absolutely, unabashedly, out of control! I want to do something to fight it! But I literally have no clue what to do…and the aforementioned responsibilities weigh so heavily on my mind that there is no room for more.
Keeping one’s head above water is a full time job, especially when you want to create the best for your family. The best health, education, knowledge, spiritual understanding, purpose and happiness – the pursuit of these things for those you love most literally requires all of your focus and energy. In fact, it requires more than your best. You need God’s help. And I suppose that is what this all comes down to. I will not be swept away by the tide of my own overwhelm caused by innumerable to-do lists! And I will not be swept away by my own feelings of inadequacy in the face of so many solemn responsibilities! I will live deliberately. I will push forward and not waver in my determination to create the life the Lord expects me to live and create for my children!
However, we need each other. I need your ideas and suggestions, and I suppose I may have something to offer that you need too. So please, share your insights about any of the above mentioned concerns… I would greatly appreciate it.