The daily grind…

This morning worked out a very differently than I planned as of midnight last night when I finally turned out my light. We woke early to the news that due to a major thunderstorm that rumbled through last night, the 5th and 6th grade school would be closed. Secondly my eight year old was up and at em with the same symptoms he has had for a few days off and on related to a crazy stomach. Next it was Ava who woke with a funky nose and loud congestion. Yeah it was not going to be the morning I had planned. On Wednesdays I attend a community bible study packed with interesting and insightful women. This morning we were digging into Colossains, but it was not meant to be today for me.

So here I sit thinking “yeah sometimes this daily grind of doing laundry and cleaning cleaning bottles, picking up and making beds feels like a true albatross.” It can feel lonely and unimportant. There must be some of you out there who would certainly agree. 🙂 Sometimes I would like to reinvent the role of SAHM with a fresh job description that does not include all the duties outside of hanging with my kiddos. So while my little one is napping, my eldest building stuff in the basement, one at school and one is chilling on the couch, I catch myself looking around and feeling so overwhelmed. This is my life? Yes, I know it sounds ridiculously selfish. It is selfish, however I am evolving… I have a new perspective that continues to shine through. It feels fresh and hopeful. I think my new perspective has been with me all along but it is now beginning to live in the driver’s seat of my soul. In fact I am thankful each day when the new thoughts trump the old thoughts and I am able to realize that nothing I am enduring or putting up with (so to speak) even begins to compare with some of the hardship I have seen. I am telling you people there is a reason why we were sent to Ethiopia and I am sure as sure can be that the answer may just be bigger than one sweet baby who is now the love of our lives! Our work there feels far from done.

In the midst of my to-dos and my overwhlemed drama my new perspective sound something like this:

I have a roof over my head and a cozy warm bed to fall into at night. I have air conditioning and heat and lights to guide me. I have telephones and electrical outlets. I have food and clean water coming from several places inside my home. I live in a comfortable neighborhood with school buses that pull through to pick up the children. These things I now see I have taken for granted. In addition I have shoes and a warm coat. I have an automobile and a bicycle. I even have a safe place to store these items. So little I could want for…I have a husband and four amazing children! I have family and friends to share my life with who communicate and comfort and protect and love me in so many unconditional ways. I have dreams and passions and ideas that I am free to share and begin to discover. I have a faith that I am free to share.

 I am still reeling from my two trips to a land and a people who have so much less, yet were ripe with smiles, charisma, character, strong work ethic and grace. My Ethiopia experience has changed and rearranged me more than I ever thought imaginable. I am being tugged and prodded to look beyond my own days and my own plans and open my eyes wide to see what God has planned. There is something there and I am listening openly each day to know what it is. With more than I want at my fingertips I am puzzled by the calling to want to give more and more of it away. To some of you I am sure to sound crazy, but really… it feels good, like a cure for all the ails us in the land of wanting more. NOW more than ever I want more for others. I want to pluck a struggling child from the streets and help he or she become safe and educated (STAY TUNED FOR THAT STORY IF I CAN EVER GET IT ALL WRITTEN), I want to dialogue with others about how we can BE THE CHANGE one child at a time, partnering with those people who have paved roads before me. I want to plan my next trip to Ethiopia to make a difference in the lives of orphans. I want to parent my daughter to know how much we love her culture and that we are richly blessed that she has joined our family. The list goes on and on…

So this morning in my pity party moments of chaos and needing to change my plans, I am reminding myself of the people of Korah who traverse huge rocks and oceans of mud during the rainy season in very minimal or no shoes, some headed to the trash dump to look for items to sell in order to eat.  I think about the pack of children I met who spend their days waiting for any tourists to arrive in a main shopping area so that they might gain a few birr for some sort of sustenance that day. I think of the dear boy, Bruhani and all he has endured since his parents died when he was very young. His story puts what I sometimes call my daily grind into perpective. Some days when I am in the thick of a sick child,  a new baby, mounds of laundry, phone calls that need returning, errands that need doing, homework that must be completed and so many stories in my head just waiting to be told, I am grateful for perspective!

2 replies
  1. Anonymous
    Anonymous says:

    Melanie, It has been years since I saw you but you will always have a special place in my heart. I remember you used to always inspire me with your great attitude and contagious happiness. I think your story is a reminder to all of us about what's important, and of course you put us all into shame, because nobody else can give so much with such great enthusiasm. I think your mission is to love and to spread that feeling and you do a great job at it. Afterr I read your story I could noy stop hugging Alex, and all the sudden I realized…he is almost as tall as I am…good luck, you litlle doughter is just a cutie, beautiful little girl, congratulations!

  2. MamaMimi
    MamaMimi says:

    I think your feelings about being a SAHM are definately valid, and I would be lying if I said I didn't experience them myself from time to time.
    I was in a funk a couple weeks back where I was so bored of my routine, of MY daily grind…and I'm so thankful for all my friends who prayed for me and stuck it through with me and reminded me why things are so good. And then now, when I have a million things I could be crying about, (okay, only a few…I tend to exaggerate) I can use all that encouragement I've been storing up for weeks to get myself through. Perspective is a wonderful thing.
    Thank you for sharing such thoughtful and beautiful words tonight.

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