I’ve been married for six years. There are some things that it has taken me those six years and two children to come to terms with. Let me start at the beginning. Growing up, my mother took care of our home. The house was always clean, there was always food in the cupboards and meals on the table, my clothes were always in my closet. I guess I knew that my mother did these things, and as I got older of course I did my share of cleaning, cooking, and laundry, but I never really felt the weight of the responsibility of it all. I never really had to sacrifice what I wanted to do in order to help out around the house.
When I got married I knew that I wanted to do what my mother did. I wanted to be the keeper of my home. I wanted to be a blessing to my husband. I guess I just never realized exactly what the job entailed. It took me a while to realize that I don’t leave my work a 5pm and relax for the rest of the evening. I don’t get the weekends off. Now that we have children I have had to come to terms with the fact that I may not get to have a full night of sleep. I don’t get to enjoy a nice shower or run out to the grocery store on a whim.
Some things I came to terms with quite early on, but others have taken me a while, and yet others I’m still holding on to! One thing is that I need to do a load of laundry every day. This is probably the easiest thing for me. I’ve always enjoyed laundry. Before we had children, I had a laundry day, and I always really looked forward to that day! Now I just know that in order to keep on top of it all I have to throw a load in each morning.
A while back I finally came to terms with the fact that I need to run a load of dishes each night. Dishes are not something I enjoy, so I would often let the dirty pile get a little too high! I am also cheap, so I hated the idea of running a load unless it was filled to the brim. In the past year or so I have come to terms with the fact that each night I have to run a load of dishes, whether it is full or not. I need to do it or else I will quickly fall behind! Also, there is nothing like waking up in the morning to a clean kitchen!
Only very recently have I come to terms with the fact that I need to vacuum the main area in our home each day. We do not have an eat-in kitchen, so our kids make lots of messes on our carpet. Sometimes I hate that I need to re-do what I just did the day before, but I’m working on it =)
Like probably everything else in life, I’m realizing that this is a heart issue. I need to quit grumbling about these things and find JOY in what God has set before me to do. I need to do the dishes with JOY because I know that I have fed my family a nutritious meal. I need to do the laundry with JOY because I know that I’m sending my husband to work confident and adequately prepared to do a good day’s worth of work. I need to give up time during my evenings and weekends with JOY because I love my children and because I am showing them Christ’s servant heart. And even if none of those things mattered, I need to do it all with JOY because doing the tasks that God has given me to do brings him glory.
I am still far from keeping a good house or having a great attitude about it, and I know that there are things that I am still holding onto, but I’m working on it! What things have you had to come to terms with when it comes to keeping your home or raising your children? I’m sure I could benefit from your lessons learned!