I took a week off from [almost] all things blogging. I needed a break. My head was pounding. My back was in knots.
Blogging was not the only cause. It was everything. Unfortunately, I cannot randomly take week long breaks from “adulting,” “momming,” and working without notice. Well, I guess I can but I may come back to no job, children, home, husband, or general freedoms. Yet, I digress.
I spent a little of that week off cleaning, a little of it reevaluating my love for the Real Housewives, a little of it taking cat naps or going to bed early, a little of it “artsing”and “craftsing” with my son. (My spell check is exploding right now.)
Most of it, though, I spent reflecting. Some things stayed. I began to post the daily affirmations and pictures on my personal Instagram and Facebook pages. I still read the most recent content of my favorite bloggers and stalked their social media pages.
What surprised me more than this was the things that I did NOT do that stayed. I did not read even one more page of a GREAT book. I did not clean or do more housework than usual. I did not spend any more time with my husband or children. I did not scroll through my favorite social media pages more. I did not do any of the things I had always told myself I would do “if I had more time.” I just rested.
Some days, I just sat in silence and marinated on some of the epic successes and tragic fails of my classroom management techniques of the day. I hugged my children more. I shouted at my children more. I appreciated my husband more. I took my husband for granted more. But most of all, I rested more.
She started by telling me, the reader, to stop talking about how busy I am. Mind. Blown.
Then she said to eliminate some items off my to-do list PERMANENTLY. Who. Knew.
And God said, “I did, but you couldn’t hear me over all the noise. And you had another week before Fall Break. And I need you to teach those kids so I couldn’t give you another classroom. And your motherhood and your marriage are part of your ministry, but so is blogging so I’m giving you rest one day at a time. Today is blogging, and Sunday will be motherhood, and Monday will be teaching. But there are some things I need you to learn while you are resting…you have got to eliminate some of your priorities. And here is what you need to learn this week:
Stop beating yourself up because you are broken. Where there is broken, there is beauty. The beauty is IN the broken.
“Your team loves you because you need them. You never hide that they are absolutely instrumental to your success. Remember that day you went to that math department meeting on literacy. Remember how embarrassed you were when they called your number, and you just knew you would not have to speak because they called five and you were at least 15th out of 16 into the room that day. Remember how you verbalized the confusion and asked how five could have possibly been you, and another teacher chuckled at the fact that you thought it could not possibly be you with a last name at the beginning of the alphabet. And you continued your flawed explanation that you were second to last to sign in that day. And she said yes, but the list is in alphabetical order. And the room erupted in laughter as your face showed every sign of what you felt – embarrassment of your error and exasperation of still having to answer what you took away from a video on the Socratic method and how to incorporate it into your mathematics classroom. But what you felt at that moment of embarrassment and exasperation was acceptance. You felt them patting you on the back. Because at that moment you were a person just like them. Not a teacher, not an expert but an ordinary girl who was beautiful because she was broken. You needed that moment. I called on you that day. For you. And for them. They needed that moment too.”
Some days of my seven days were amazing. I crossed every item off my to-do list with time to spare. On others, I could hardly recall 7 moments of gratefulness (outside of the usual roof over the head, clothes on the back, overall good health, food on the table for which I am ALWAYS grateful). And God chimed in again. “Correct.”
I rolled my eyes, again exasperated. How in the world could both be correct? To hear the word “correct” on a day when I am so tired that I fall asleep on my son while we are playing school and I am the teacher but decide that I will close my eyes during the 30-second nap time and sleep through the rest of the game and dinner… is confusing to say the least. “I got nothing done today. I even fell asleep while attempting to spend quality time with my babies.” No cleaning. No talks with my friends. No time with my husband. Not even time tying up loose ends for leftover school work (which is an item permanently crossed off my home to-do list by the way). And God said again, “Correct.”
The next day, I did a load of laundry, laid out the clothes, played with the kids, spent time with the husband, read some good blog posts, caught up on email, created a perfect learning environment, revelled in my pumpkin spice latte, and went to bed early. “Correct.”
Finally, I screamed, “HOW CAN TWO CLEARLY CONTRADICTING DAYS BOTH BE CORRECT?”
And He stood, and He began to clap. And He hugged me. And He screamed, “You did it!! You finally did it!”
And like a kid, I beamed from ear to ear and danced around and clapped. And when all the commotion died down, I whispered, “what did I do?”
“You found the balance, my dear. Isn’t it obvious? Balance is not in every day the same. Balance is living each day as is and searching for gratefulness good or bad. Balance is relying on Me and others to get you through. Balance is finding out what you can add to complete the picture. Balance is trying to fix those parts of your life that must be repaired and accepting the rest that must not.
I said it before and I’ll say it again. Not all that is broken must be fixed. Sometimes the beauty is IN the broken.”
What about you? What is some beauty that you have found in your brokenness?
Join me in my journey to find beauty in broken!