The Blessing of Children

Dear Diary, Today I Lost It…

Blogging is kind of like writing in a diary–except it’s public and anybody can read it. And though normally, we don’t like people peeking at our secret journal entries, we actually hope that our blogging posts will get lots of attention. Isn’t that ironic? I think it’s because we want to be noticed, to be validated, and to feel important. And although revealing our weaknesses and struggles to those around us can sometimes backfire when they don’t respond how we think they should, blogging can be a “safer” way for us to share what’s on the inside. If somebody writes a distasteful comment, we can ignore it. If we don’t like the way we said something in a post, we can edit it. If we don’t like the post at all, we can delete it. Can’t do that in normal life.

Normal life is not as clean. Not as tidy. Not as under control. Blogging is a sort of retreat from the chaos and unpredictability of our daily craziness. It’s a way to package the story of what’s currently happening in our lives in a nice, neat little box, and feel like we have some control over it after all. It’s also a way of stepping back from it for a moment, and giving ourselves the chance to relax enough to view it from a different perspective. And it helps.

Take me, for example. I had a pretty bad day yesterday, and today. Now, I could choose to write about it as a way of venting my frustration, and would probably feel better after I got some comforting comments from my blogging friends (which I always very much appreciate, by the way). But I wouldn’t have to tell them everything. I could leave out the uglier parts, and just be vague about the details. After letting off steam, I would feel calmer at least, and that would help me to confront the problem. I’d come back from my writing with an increased ability to navigate the craziness.

So, am I going to tell you what happened? Well, blogging does have its limitations. Let’s just say that my brain is (still) adjusting to toys scattered all over the floor; cardboard boxes, tools, bikes and all sorts of other stuff cluttering the porch; children’s voices that call to me (loudly) all at the same time; dinner that has to be made somehow on a counter crowded with dirty dishes; papers stuffed in drawers and sticking off the edges of shelves; and smelly diapers that suddenly and urgently have to be changed just after I pick up the phone.  I could add to the list, but you get my point. My mind sometimes feels overwhelmed with the chaos of it all, and I feel that I can’t cope. For the moment.

I shout at my children about how messy the house is, and why can’t they help me keep things clean without me always having to tell them to do it. Why do I have to tell them, Do this, do that–why can’t they just see a piece of trash on the floor and pick it up without me having to say, You, go pick up that piece of trash. Etc., etc. Then, today, I wanted to get so much done, and the baby kept crying and wouldn’t stay asleep for five minutes, that by the evening, I was so depressed I gave my family cereal for dinner, and went off to bed with the baby. I only came out here to type this post after she finally went to sleep, after all day of not wanting to! Deep breath.

Okay, tomorrow’s a new day. Babies will be babies. Children will be children. Houses will sometimes be messy. Order and serenity will return to this abode. Not everything can be perfect, but it can at least improve, with work and persistence. Don’t forget patience. And resilience. Wow, I feel better already. Maybe one of my future posts will be about how I managed to control my stress over not being in control of the things that cause stress. After surmounting this obstacle and recovering my state of calm, then I will look back, and say, This is how I overcame that problem. And I will give other people pointers on how to keep their counters clean, and how to (not) talk on the phone and change diapers at the same time.


To take at look at how I felt about this issue a few days later, read my article And after the Storm, a Calm…

 

 

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10 thoughts on “Dear Diary, Today I Lost It…

  1. Dear Jessica,
    I read your post with compassion and deep affection. When I read the part that after all of these, you were so depressed that you could only offer your family cereal for dinner and went off to bed with the baby, the vivid scereny came into my mind, and felt your inner cry with fatigue! Great young mother with 6 children!

    Though Anne of Green Gables (who had 6 children) had a helper at home all the time, still she had much struggles. So how much more you must feel daily struggles.

    By the way, I’d like to say that I liked the introductory part of this post regarding the essence of blogging, which was really true:)

    It’s so comforting to know from your honest post that our daily (external & interior) life is not always like a neat box but in the midst of the inner storms, we can step out of it and even write a message to our fellow pilgrims, which is really encouraging.

    with much love,
    Kinuko
    p.s. We are your cheer leaders:)

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    1. Thank you for your heartwarming reply, Kinuko! I felt a connection of sisterly understanding between us when I read your comment. Thank you for understanding and for caring about what I’m going through! I love that we can encourage each other through our low points–I was so comforted when I read your words the other day!
      Jessica

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Awe, Jessica! This post is so endearing and appreciated! Theres a flipside to your writing; other people who read learn to love you through reading your trials and successes and BIRTHS, haha! Anyway, it is woven pretty tightly into our brains to compare ourselves with other women and this, of course, has extreme negative consequences but it also gives us the craving of empathy that we also seem to need when we hear of similar stories, not necessarily (sp?) because we all want to see eachother as victims but because we all love what we love and struggle with the rest. So when we hear [or read!] other stories that give us a glimpse into the lives of women whose hearts are somewhat aligned with ours as far as motivation, religion, etc., it can really impact us when we learn new things that further bond us together through similar circumstance.

    I used to think that my superior wisdom and [non] experience made it so important that i teach other women to be like me and read books I read and discipline how I discipline and etc. then the Lord showed me what I didn’t ever see before, my obsession with being acknowledged and affirmed and it was a lot easier for my online Crystal persona to get praise then the real one. I had turned it into an idol and as my friend quoted Zora Neale Hurston: “people are prone to build a statue of the kind of person it pleases them to be. And few people want to be forced to ask themselves, ‘What if there is no me like my statue?” So I took some time to heal from the decisions I had made that caused me to expect and rely on praise and hung out with the real Crystal for a few months. 🙂

    So anyway, this close knit community of like-minded wives and moms can really be impacted by posts that show another’s struggles similar to ours- especially since comparing struggles is the main tool women use to bond. I don’t know why this is except maybe because most people don’t love the same things and our husband’s don’t expect the same things and our houses aren’t the same and our climates and yards and faces and bodies and family members and pastors and kids’ personalities aren’t the same but we can always feel the same feelings of overwhelmed or depressed or pure maternal joy or devotion toward our husbands or anger or being at our wit’s end, etc. because we all pretty much are experiencing the same struggles that come with what does bond us- being daughters of Christ, wives to our husbands and mothers to our kids.

    I’ll be saying a prayer for you today friend!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Crystal, for sharing your thoughts! I did hesitate about whether or not to publish this post. As you may have noticed, I did not choose to divulge all the details; what I did reveal was certainly enough on its own! But even that was embarrassing. However, it did help me to be able to write out my feelings, and I also want to avoid always presenting my “best self”–or as you quoted, “a statue of the kind of person it pleases [me] to be.” I want to be honest about my shortcomings and not pretend to be perfect. And you’re right, that reading about each other’s struggles helps us to bond as sisters in Christ and to be comforted when we go through similar circumstances. When I read about someone else’s problems, I don’t think What a loser, but I feel compassion for her, and hurt along with her.
      I feel so honored that you think of me as a friend, and that you are praying for me! Thank you–you’ve really made my day!
      Jessica

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  3. Dear Jessica, reading your post,I remember the days when my son was little. Maybe I already told you,my son has handicap.Sometimes I have to shout to let him study or do something he has to do even now.Now he is 13years old,but his mental age is lower than his phygical one.To be a mother is not always easy,even we are christians.

    My philippina friend was raised in big family. She has 7 siblings. Off course her mother was very busy everyday. My friend told me that she never feel bored in her family.There were a lot to do. Helping her mother,playing with younger siblings,studying,going to church together etc. I felt that she had been so happy in her family.Her parents are so pious christians,they taught their children about godly value in their daily life.

    I guess someday your children will also know how they were blessed and happy,cherish memories of the days like my friend.
    I respect your frankness and sincere motherhood. God bless you,and take care!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I deeply appreciate your kind and sweet comment, Sanae! Yes, you had told me before that your son has a handicap. I guess that we all have our different situations and unique trials, and like you said, to be a mother is not easy, even when we are Christians. But, it helps to have friends that care! Thank you for your encouragement!
      Jessica

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  4. This post made me giggle. I can SO relate to what you said about blogging, wow! That is exactly how blogging works (mentally) for me too. It’s a way of processing, and it’s certainly neater than everyday life.

    And:

    “Why do I have to tell them, Do this, do that–why can’t they just see a piece of trash on the floor and pick it up without me having to say, You, go pick up that piece of trash.”

    Oh, my goodness. YES.

    🙂

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    1. Thanks for that, Diana! I’m glad my post made you giggle! I was worried that people might be disappointed in me after reading about my giving my family cereal for dinner (not good homemaking)–but I loved that you had such good humor about it all. And now that it’s been a few days since that incident, I’m able to look back on it with a smile, too!
      I’m always glad to get your comments!
      Jessica

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  5. I feel like blogging becomes a bit more stressful when you know that you have regular readers.
    I catch myself thinking what people, who leave comments on my blog, will think of the post/article. However, I quickly stop myself from that way of thinking.
    God’s opinion matters the most.

    Like

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