Friday, May 31, 2013


I haven't been this worn out in a very long time. I worked 92 hours a week one summer in San Francisco and lived in an abandoned school building. Hardest summer of my life. That's kind of how I feel right now.

Brody was sick for almost two weeks. He woke up every 2 hours at night, wanting to be held and nursed. So I would hold him and nurse him, because he was sick and miserable and it was the only thing that comforted him. About 5 minutes after Brody got better, Liam got a cold. Runny nose, cough, just doesn't feel good. I got back injections last week, and I'm hopeful they will help heal my back, but right now it just HURTS. When I bend over to pick up Brody, it feels like it might just snap. And, I got two moles removed on Wednesday. They were small and only needed one stitch each, but they hurt. After I put Brody down last night, I just laid on our bedroom floor, crying. Spent.

Sometimes, when things are tough with the kids, going to work is like a vacation. No one pulling on me, crying in my face, I don't have to wipe anyone else's nose or bottom. But lately I've just felt divided. Like I'm only half myself at work, missing my boys so much. And when I get home, I'm so worn out from trying to cram in everything that needs to be done, that I'm exhausted and just want the kids to sit and play quietly... which hasn't happened yet! I end up answering work emails while I'm nursing and replying to texts while pushing the swing. I usually have a rule where I don't do any work while I'm with my kids so I can be present. I like that rule and it works well. But there wasn't any Mother's Day Out this week and I had to juggle my work and kids. That's the beauty of my job, it's so very flexible and I'm so thankful to work somewhere where I can walk down the hall and feed Brody, where I can take my kids to the doctor when they're sick. I have so much to be thankful for every day. But today I'm tired.

I wanted to have an upswing to the end of this post. How God showed me something beautiful and changed my life through this time of being tired. Nope. Not today. Maybe tomorrow. Today I'm just tired.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

My heart is heavy with the tragic loss of life from the tornadoes in Moore yesterday. As I think about it and try to go on with my daily tasks, my eyes are filled with tears. In light of such heartache, I am choosing today to find ways to show God's kindness to others.  My prayer is for God to have mercy on those who are mourning the loss of life and property. Days like these make me long for heaven. 

As I was getting ready for work and looking for a necklace this morning, I stumbled across this box:

And inside, is one of my most precious possessions, a tiny starfish. You know that cheesy poem, where a man is walking along the beach and sees another man picking up a starfish out of the multitude of starfish, and throwing it back in the water? And then the man bends down, picks up another, and throws it to safety? The first man asks why he is doing it. There are so many starfish, what difference could he possibly make? "It made a difference to that one," was the second man's reply. That is my life's goal. My purpose. 

I spent two weeks in Mexico every summer during high school. Tijuana, the "armpit of the western hemisphere." One summer, as we were building houses and de-liceing kids in a local dump, I met a woman named Maria. Maria's husband had recently died from AIDS and she was trying to raise her four kids, the youngest, Elisabeth, was probably 6 months old. At the end of my time there, Maria asked me if I would take Elisabeth home with me and adopt her. I was 16 years old. As much as I wanted to, I couldn't take Elisabeth with me. That night, the leaders gave each one of us a tiny starfish and reminded us that we can do something every day to help someone else. I did what I could for Maria and Elisabeth while I was in Mexico and I still think about them and wonder what became of them. But the starfish image stuck with me. 

Sometimes I wonder why God has me in this job right now. And then I think of two little girls whose mommy "took too much medicine" and died. I hug those girls extra tight when I see them and I think of the starfish. God has be here to give mommy hugs when someone doesn't have a mommy who can hug them right now. God has me here to be a lap to sit on, to be someone to give a high five after a stunning performance of "I Dropped My Dolly in the Dirt" during a talent show. I get to be the hands and feet and arms and tears of Jesus. Not all the time. Sometimes I am the Xerox-copy-making hands of Jesus. Or the volunteer-calling voice of Jesus. Or the ordering-VBS-supplies hands of Jesus. It gets mundane. It gets frustrating. But today I remember the starfish. 

Since we are not there yet, I want to bring heaven to earth, even though my impact may be small. Will you join me?