Monday, July 30, 2012

early bedtimes and living intentionally.

Yesterday, E just couldn't get a grip on herself.  Before church she had cried at least 2 times... getting frustrated over everything.  She got mad at me when I combed her hair with a comb rather than allowing her to continue to use the plastic fork which was giving her not much success.  She was angry and weepy about everything we said.

After church, we had lunch with friends... and she was just fine... until it was time to leave.  She walked out of their house without even a real goodbye to our friend and pouted the whole way home.  And then the whole way to Home Depot.  And then the whole way home again.

The climax of this pout came when she asked if we could go swimming and we said no, which caused a magnitude of tears and teenage-sounding lines.  She managed to pull it together for a bit... but couldn't maintain the together-ness long enough to even finish dinner.  So with only a few bites of a baked potato eaten, she went to bed.

Before 6:00pm.

(Please note, DSS, we were not withholding food from our child.  She chose to skip dinner in favor of some solitude.  I promise we'll feed her well when she wakes up.  We don't let children go hungry.)

I feel quite certain that yesterday's behavior was E's way of sorting through the emotions of a previously packed two weeks.  As we've seen with her time and time again, even when her packed schedule is packed with goodness... she still needs time of nothingness to unpack.

Her Mom tends to be the same way.  Historically, when I would cram too much in to my schedule, my body would shut down with an asthma attack.  While this still happens, it happens far less now that I have the winning combination of good medicine and a husband who "makes" me slow down every now and then.

But even when I maintain life at a good pace, my heart and mind still race.  My emotions get as jumbled as E's do... I just usually have more coping skills to fake it better.  The introverted part of me (yes, there is one) desperately requires time alone- to think, to clean, to sit, to read, to be still... and when that part is neglected, I crumble... just like my wee one.

Dan and I are constantly making adjustments to our schedule to make sure that both of us have the "down time" needed to keep peace in our home.  This morning, my quest for peace came in a laundry washing- Quiet Time having- coffee drinking start to the day.  (Side note?  I also have discovered recently that my "state of calm" is in direct correlation to how much junk is on my kitchen counter.)  Today, while I attempt to keep peace and order in my home, I'll also be nailing down some details to close out Daddy's estate.  It seems bizarre that not even 130 days ago, my life looked so completely different.  Friday I was on the phone with a friend and as I said to her "I just miss my Daddy...", the tears came and couldn't stop.  Finding peace now looks so different than it did then... but it is peace nonetheless.

The irony of my word this year is that it is "intentional".  So funny that I felt led back in January to speak a word into my life which would cause me to pause and be aware of every most decisions I make.  So funny that before I even knew how this would feel, I was preparing my heart to intentionally choose it's response.

My heart fluctuates between being a jumbled mess and at peace... and the peace only comes from Jesus.  I have become more and more dependent on Him in this season.  That doesn't mean that in the midst of this I've made all wise intentional choices... but they have (for the most part) been intentional.  And like Miss E, I've sent myself to bed early a couple of nights because I knew that was what was best- for all of us.

But here's to a new day.  And a new week.  And a (almost) new month.  Here's to making intentional choices about how we spend our time, our money, our energy, and our emotions.  Here's to Doing Good for those around us.  Here's to starting our day on a positive note- looking toward the One who created it.

And here's to making it last until bedtime... which will hopefully be later than 6:00pm.

1 comment:

The Smittys said...

and drink beer, right?