Freedom Envy

This post makes me a bad person… Fortunately I have a good friend who pulled me back into reality.

I woke up this morning for the third time around 6:00AM… not for another pregnancy bathroom break, but because my son was awake.

As we are still in our temporary living situation, I opted to console his screechy self rather than let him continue his shrieks of displeasure. Usually, my husband and I give him about 45 minutes of “alone time” in the mornings so we can get ready and prepare for the day. But, being in someone else’s home, I find it uncouth to disturb their sleep as well as mine when they’ve been so gracious to host us in the first place.

So I scooped up my man and attempted to sit with him in the recliner for another hour. No such luck. He was so dang wiggly, neither of us could get comfortable and I ended up putting him down in frustration and starting the day sooner than anticipated.

Everything else followed suit: early breakfast, early diaper change, early stroll around the neighborhood.

I’m not a morning person. There was a time in my life when I woke up at 3:30 to be at the gym by 4:00 for a solid 2 hour workout before heading in to work..  that time was before children. And as I pushed my still screechy child around in a stroller through an unfamiliar, though welcoming neighborhood, I encountered a woman who reminded me of that bygone Me. 

She passed us twice over the course of her morning run, only noticing my son and I the second time, pulling herself out of the moment long enough to smile and wave as I limped by with swollen, pregnant, hippo feet, totally winded from walking 6 blocks…

I admired her in that moment. Not just her impeccably matched running gear, elegant stride, and enviable pace, but for her effort and commitment. I envied her, too. I envied her freedom. I hopped onto a lengthy train of thought starting with, “I bet it only takes her 10 minutes tops to get dressed and be out the door on a run in the mornings.” All the way to, “…and she doesn’t have to clean anyone’s poop before she goes”

By the time I got back to the house at 9:15, my toddler was asleep. So naturally, rather than risk cheating him and myself out of a nap, I left him in his jogger stroller, dropped the seat back, and let him keep on snoozin’. It was during that snooze that my friend Emily texted me. I refer to her (in my own mind) as my accountabilibuddy- that person who yanks me out of selfishness and negativity and reminds me who God is, and who I am in Christ. 

Thank goodness she did. After we messaged a bit, I found I had a much better outlook for the rest of my day and that I was in a better frame of mind to be mother to my son.

The words that stuck with me most were (paraphrased), “I pray you get the time today to pause and reflect and remember that He is God, and He is good.” I don’t have a whole lot of people who pray that for me on a daily basis. But God answered her prayer and I did get time to reflect.

Hebrews 1:3 says, “He [Jesus] is the radiance of His [God’s] glory, the exact expression of His nature, and He sustains all things by his powerful word…”

He sustains all things.  ALL things. Even this worn out, tired, frustrated, displaced, swollen, pregnant mama who sometimes just needs a break from Mom-ing long enough to remember that it’s only by God’s grace and healing power that I was able to conceive a child at all! I needed to be refilled with God’s Word.

Then enter mom-guilt.

But it didn’t last long. You know why? Because Jesus knows my tendency to be impatient with my son. He knows that I mean well. He knows I would lay down my life for my family, like he layed down His life for me. And His Grace abounds to me, in my most selfish and ungrateful of moments.

And it’s for THAT freedom, spiritual freedom that I am truly grateful.

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