Monday, March 10, 2008

Praying for something new

Over the last few days, some things have come up that make my heart ache as a mom and have changed my ideas about what to pray for. Last Thursday was one of my days off with R. We really had a great day playing together and then visiting his friend. R told me: "This was really fun because I hardly ever get to see you, Mommy." He said it very matter-of-factly, but with a sad voice.

Then, on Saturday night, R woke up because of a bad dream. He explained, "I was at school, and I couldn't find you anywhere, Mommy!" He reiterated the dream to me again later.

Yesterday, R had a playdate at a local park, and A was going to take him because he's become friends with R's friend's dad (and only the dads were going). But R was upset about me not going and said, "But you don't even know what S [his friend] looks like!" Which is SO not true.

It's possible that R has figured out the thing I'm most sensitive about and uses it against me, but because of the bad dream, I think maybe he's having some issues, too. I don't know. I just feel badly because it's not like I choose to be away from him. I have to. It's just the situation we're in. I would quit my job and stay home in a heartbeat if it were financially possible.

And, I honestly do spend 99.99995% of my time when I'm not at work with him. There have been some occasional Sunday afternoons when A will take R on a subway ride for fun or when I'm just completely exhausted from the week and A will take R to his favorite indoor playspace - the one I refuse to take him to because it makes me wish I had a prescription for horse tranquilizers (for me, not for the kids - it's a little too crowded and nutty for my taste).

Every few weeks I feel this need to document to myself that I'm doing the best I can with my situation. I am late to work almost every day because I won't leave the house without seeing R in the morning. I hardly ever make plans with friends that would take away from my time with him. I only get my haircut 3 or 4 times a year because I don't want to take a half-hour away from him on the weekends. I'm not complaining about any of this. I choose to spend pretty much every waking moment with R because I want to. And he seems to need me to do it. Even when we're eating, he's got to be touching me at all times. Usually he has his arm entwined around mine.

I've spent a long time trying to come to terms with our situation, trying to convince myself that maybe this is the way God thinks is best for me and my family (for me to work full-time). But every time I think I'm okay with it for a few weeks, something like R's comments or my own heartache will make me question things again. I've been afraid to ask God for a change because I was trying to accept that this was his plan (and I don't like making requests of God for me because I have so much to be thankful for - when friends and family are suffering around me from broken marriages, illness and disease, depression, and tragedies, it seems very selfish of me to pester God with less important requests). But I've decided to ask anyway because maybe I'm wrong about his plan for me. My devotional yesterday was about trusting God and taking the risks he sets before you, and my first thought then was that I don't know what risks he wants me to take. So I'm going to pray that God shows me another way. Maybe there is some dream job out there where I could do something meaningful and serve God in some way, but I'd only have to work three days a week (the days R is in school), and make the same money I make now. LOL. Or maybe the dream job is for A so I can just stay home. I don't know, but I figure it doesn't hurt to ask.

Maybe I'm glorifying the stay-at-home mom life way too much. I just know that I feel happiest when I'm caring for R, cooking for my family, and taking care of our house. I feel like those are the things I'm best at and that give me the most satisfaction as a human being. Doing those things brings out my creativity.

So that's what I'm thinking about today.

And, because I hate my long posts without pictures, here's a picture of R and his friend watching the pins fall while bowling on Saturday. They had a blast:


shaun said...

I wish I could tell you something helpful. But, I am just a failure My family is fragmented and I am probably losing them, at least part of them. I guess God is doing something new for me, I really don't want it. Maybe I shouldn't give Him credit for this. Any way ,Money or not, please cling to the people you love. Life is too short.

Wanda said...

Perhaps this won't be helpful~~ but we were always in small churches, and raising 4 kids, wasn't easy ~~ So I was a working mom. I has some of the same issues and they are hard to deal with. God knows your particular situation as He knew mine and my heart was always for my kids ~~ They are all well adjusted happy adults who tell me when I'm remembering not being there all the time, that they don't remember it like that at all ~~~ they remember the good times as the park --the cookies, the stories read ~~~~ give R time~~ YOU ARE AN EXCELLENT MOM ~~ and he is a typical little boy who loves his Mommy.

God Bless you dear one.

sandwhichisthere said...

Sweetheart, you touched a chord with the comment about Rix's dream. I remember having that dream more than once and my Mother didn't work. I don't think that it has anything to do with your working, I think that it is a normal fear that every child has at that age. His world is changing and expanding and it can be frightening. You have taken such good care of him that you are his comfort and refuge in any situation. His mind seeks you out whenever he feels uncomfortable with new things. Wanting to stay home and cook and clean and care for your family is normal. Watching people you love eat something you have prepared feels so good. I agree with you about not asking God for something for yourself. If God is going to grant one request, it would be a shame to waste that on oneself instead of those we love. You are as dear to God as you are to me and I am sure God will keep the bad things away. Good things are a whole other subject. Once, when I was wallowing in a sea of self pity, you cleared my mind with a simple statement. "Dad, sometimes when you ask God for something, the answer is NO.". A person might ask God for a new car and not get it, never knowing that that new car would have been in a wreck and killed them.
You are loved by many, your son, your husband, your parents, your sisters, and God. You are loved because you are loving. You are not only doing the best you can, you are doing the best that can be done. All of your life, you have always done the best that can be done and you still are,
all of my love and pride, always, daddy

Kansas Bob said...

Wanda said it so much better than I could Kristen.

Just remember that love never fails.. let love lead you.. you might be surprised where it takes you.

Happy Tuesday!

Gardener Greg said...

Kristen you sound really troubled. From what I know, you do spend a lot of time with your son so I wouldn't worry about that issue. Kids do try to get all of our time so I wouldn't even think that you don't do enough.

When we decided to have children, my wife gave up a 40k a year job which was a lot back then. We suffered thourgh years of doing without and barely scraping by. My wife was verbally attacked by our friends and family for not "helping out" with the income. They said she had it made because she didn't have to work but that was our decission. It was the best decission we ever made and it shows in our kids.

Ericka said...

Oh, Kristen I'm sorry that you're feeling bad. But I like Dad's comment - this may not be about you, but just something R is going through. And you working has given him so much time with A; that's always seemed really special to me, that A & R are so close (i'm sure A feels that way too). R knows you love him, and must be very secure most of the time, if he can always be touching you. Plus, he's growing up seeing that both mommies & daddies go to work, and I'm sure someday he'll be amazed by what you do, and how hard you work (and hopefully have a girlfriend/wife who also works that hard!) I know it's tough, but you guys really set such a great example for him of how to deal with real life, & he's turning out so wonderful!

LEstes65 said...

I love you. And will join you in your prayer. The only thing I'll say here is, all of the heavy issues your friends are wrestling with are theirs to wrestle. You're my support. You're not supposed to save me. And I can tell you that God doesn't dole out blessings based on whether you're suffering enough. I'm not making my point here well. My point is - pray specifically. Don't worry about what is happening around you. I mean, worry in that you pray for your loved ones. But don't let it define what you ask for. Ask God for exactly what you want. There is nothing wrong with asking for blessings of health, wealth, love or anything else just because someone's marriage has tanked! And as someone whose marriage has tanked, let me tell you, I'm asking specifically for a pretty hot Christian guy to be in my future. And I'm still praying for our friend's ailing dad. And for you and your gorgeous family. And now for you to find your perfect job - and I'm hoping God thinks that is a stat at home mom!!!

Love you. (sorry for the verbose-osity)

Heidi @ GGIP said...

Your concern for your child shows that you are a good mom.