Friends recently asked my husband how it is parenting five children. In a moment of practical profundity he said, "It's like that game 'whac-a-mole.' One of them pops up and needs something and just when you knock that one down, another one pops up." And I must add the obvious, that sometimes two or three pop up at one time. Of course, he wasn't referring to physically knocking them down; although I must admit that being armed with that giant, plastic hammer has a certain appeal. ;-)
The truth is "fatigue makes cowards of us all" and PMS makes psychos of us all -well, the female population anyway. If that is TMI then you may want to stop reading now because that's just the mood I'm in. Thanks to the aforementioned PMS. I'm not the best mom when I am exhausted. My kids suddenly seem far too needy and every request is like a pint of blood being sucked out of my arm. I come up weak and dizzy. I'm not the best wife when I am exhausted. My husband is useless to me. No matter how much he tries to help, he never seems to help in the way I think I need him to help at that moment and so the help he has given doesn't get counted as helpful. (it did make sense, just read it again slowly) It frustrates me and you can imagine how badly it frustrates him.
Turns out my children are just that -children. And my husband is human and is not a mind-reader. And even though the PMS will soon enough fade, the fatigue is going to be around for a while. I've got to learn to quit fighting it and start functioning within it. I also need to change my definition of resting. I heard a woman on the radio once talking about how we often take time for ourselves to "rest and relax" by watching television, playing computer games, etc. And while these things do give us a chance to turn our brains off and veg out for a few minutes, they do little to refresh and refuel us for jumping back into life. According to Acts 3.19 "Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord."
So true refreshing comes from the presence of the Lord. The presence that dwells in me through the Holy Spirit. Which tells me that if I will acknowledge His presence and act out of that power and not my own fatigue, then even those things which seem to drain me -serving my children, cutting my husband some slack, late night baby feedings, can become avenues of refreshing.
Easier said than done? Sure. Still worth saying? Hope so.