It happened last spring.
That thing that happens in my home about once a year when I start forgetting to use the word “no” and instead find myself overtired, overcommitted and completely over the schedule that inadvertently puts productivity, not people, first place in my life.
My work-from-home job at the publishing company where I’ve worked for more than a decade was crazy busy, the boys’ end-of-year concerts and programs and competitions and extra-curriculars were dominating our lives and the regular medical and therapy appointments for Superman kept us in waiting rooms a few days a week. The volunteer commitments I’d made when our calendar looked so empty in January were now consuming all our time in May, and with hubby in and out for work, I was trying to manage the schedules of three boys and one working mama with a blog that had just turned one year old and the emotional needs of three boys who needed a mama functioning on more than four hours of sleep.
I was exhausted, depleted and buried under piles of adoption paperwork for Superhero 4, and I was struggling to keep up with all the “things” I thought I should be doing in this season.
That’s when I asked my dear friend Leia, who somehow owns and runs her own business while managing a family of soon seven superheroes — four from hard places with various medical needs — how on earth she made time to do it all.
Her kids were well loved, her home was this beautiful place of peace and her jerky store was thriving as it raised more than $80,000 in one year for orphan surgeries and adoptive families. And though I knew her plate was full and her days were fuller, this precious woman never looked stressed.
Neither did her kids.
This is how she does it. This is her secret. This is the magic sauce that keeps her big family keeping the main thing the main thing.
She separates the glass from the rubber.
As all of us establish our goals, calendars and routines for this year, may we do the same.
By Guest Blogger Leia Capps, owner of Sage Harvest Gourmet Jerky
Being a working mom can feel like a juggling act of epic proportions. Trying to keep countless balls in the air in order to achieve that elusive “work-family balance" can seem impossible, and there is a reason for that.
It actually IS impossible.
It took me years to realize that true “balance” came from letting go of the idea that I would ever obtain “balance” as our culture defines it. In a strange way, feeling like I was enough came through realizing that I would never be enough to adequately juggle ALL the balls.
So, after this realization and after taking some time to discern which balls were made of glass and which ones were made of rubber, it was with great intention that our family allowed some of those balls to fall to the ground.
Attending all the birthday parties, neatly folded laundry, ANYTHING Pinterest, most things PTO, recreational sports and a picture perfect home — all rubber balls. Depending on the season of life, sometimes we pick them up and sometimes we let them lie.
Time with our family, time with God, preparing healthy food, orphan advocacy and pouring into our newly adopted children — all glass balls. For us, these remain non-negotiable priorities in all seasons of life and they are always worth the fight of keeping in the air and intact.
So, weary mama, if you feel like you aren’t enough in any arena, it is probably time to assess and sort through all the things you are juggling — time to separate the glass from the rubber. Laying some of those rubber balls down in order to keep the most precious glass balls intact probably won’t win you the badge of honor for being the busiest supermom out there, but it will afford you sanity. More importantly, juggling fewer balls will free up your hands to hold those precious little hands in yours more often.
Learn more about Leia Capps, her family’s story or their beautiful store that donates 10 percent of proceeds to orphan care at www.sageharvestjerky.com.