It's amazing to me that we always think that we know what is best for us, when really God knows what's best for us and sometimes we're so blind and stupid that in order for Him to show us what we need to do, He has to whack us upside the head.
Or in my case, let me listen to a certain 10-month-old scream for a mile on a run that I just had to take, despite the fact that both of my children were clearly tired and melting down before I left the house.
Now don't get me wrong, I am NOT saying that running when you have kids is bad. In fact, I give running a huge amount of credit towards my mostly-sane state. I'm not even saying that you shouldn't run when your kids are grumpy, because I often run simply *because* my kids are grumpy. I'm simply saying that when the Holy Spirit is prodding your spirit, maybe you should listen. Go figure.
We're doing a bit of potty training and sleep training in these parts. Piper's night wakings were so inconsistent that we *knew* she was capable of sleeping for longer stretches, so Chuck is working with her at night (gently, for the record- never gonna be a fan of cry-it-out). Jade is quite possibly ready to be completely potty trained and I haven't even tried before now because our lives have just been too chaotic. The "problem" with both of these things is that they require a lot of consistency and a bit of a routine. Piper has very rarely had a morning nap at home in her crib because I can't stand sitting at home all day long and that's what I would wind up doing if I let her take a morning nap because morning nap would run into lunch which would run into Jade's nap.
Up until now, that's been working fine. And probably will be fine again in the future. But right now, with us trying to teach her how to sleep and when to sleep it would probably be helpful if I wasn't carting her all over town for a run and errands each morning. And Jade? Well, I haven't been willing to attempt potty training on the go yet, so she's been about half (more so?) in diapers and half in underwear and I *know* that potty training is going to take longer this way.
I kept telling people "if I had to stay at home all the time for potty training I would go crazy!"
And then it occurred to me, yesterday on my run in fact, that maybe that's a problem. Staying home for a week with only myself and my kids for company should not be the end of the world. I'm sure that for some people it would actually be a welcome break. But ya see, my mind can be a scary place. I've always had issues with over-analyzing everything and then spiraling into a depression that I have a difficult time digging myself out of. But I'm 28 folks... when am I going to be able to move past that? When am I going to be able to spend a day at home in my jammies and not think "oh no, I wasn't productive today, I must be getting depressed again, should I go back on medication?"
I mean really, doesn't that just sound a bit crazy?
So really, I don't know the answer. But I feel the Lord urging me to slow down, to take the time to really invest in my kids and to find other ways to maintain my sanity. I can still run in the late afternoon after the kiddos have napped (lots of crock pot meals in our future...) for a while until we get this sleep thing figured out. I can do my grocery shopping after bedtime because (for the time being at least) my husband will be home every night. So I'll still get out, which is good. But I am going to resist the urge to run in the mornings and take a cue from the falling leaves and cool(er) weather and slow down a bit. Stay home with my kids and pour into them what they need right now. I won't lie, it won't be easy for me, but I believe it will force me to turn to the Father to pour into me, so that I can pour into them. To stop relying on myself to be able to do everything and to recognize that God's word can help me to feel free even when I might be "trapped" inside my house.
We'll see how it goes :)