As a mother, I've learned a thing or two about sacrifice... The endless giving of yourself to others, putting others needs first. In these days with a newborn and a toddler, I've learned also what it means to be pushed to a place where you don't believe you have the strength to go on. Life, its demands, are literally so hard you think you can't handle them... And then you do.
I firmly believe it is The Lord granting me the strength and patience to do what I am doing now. I don't have it in me alone to give so much to so many people day after day. I heard this song by Josh Wilson called "Fall Apart" on the radio tonight and this line stood out to me:
"How can I come to the end of me and somehow still have all I need?"
This is it. I come to the end of me so often these days, and that's where God picks up. I could call it some inner strength or whatever but its really not. It's just God, helping me give more of myself than I thought possible.
You may think that in this process I must lose a bit of myself too. Actually, the opposite it true. By serving my family, I find a joy I could never have found merely serving my self. I do the things I love... Dancing, singing, sewing, gardening, but just a little differently for now. And watching my kids discover the world and things I love is the most amazing gift... Even
more than sleep and time to myself. How incredible that I get to be the one there from the start of their lives, watching them become their own selves in front of my eyes.
I'll leave you with this poem by Rainer Maria Rilke, a favorite of mine and one of my favorite authors (Jane Kirkpatrick ).
"God speaks to each of us as he makes us,
then walks with us silently out of the night.
These are the words we dimly hear:
You, sent out beyond your recall,
go to the limits of your longing.
Flare up like a flame
and make big shadows I can move in.
Let everything happen to you: beauty and terror.
Just keep going. No feeling is final.
Don't let yourself lose me.
Nearby is the country they call life.
You will know it by its seriousness.
Give me your hand."
Book of Hours, I 59