Seasons of Joy

Looking for a way to bring peace and joy to your day? Seasons of Joy is my 10-week seasonal guidebook to add rhythm and fun to your daily routine. Each guidebook has ten weeks' worth of circle times, stories, arts, crafts, and handwork, painting, playtime activities and more!
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Seasons of Joy seeks to empower families to create peaceful rhythms and routines and joyful celebrations that follow the circle of the year. The blog also chronicles our adventures in living simply, loving exuberantly, and Waldorf inspired homeschooling.

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Monday Musings: Having it all

Lately I’ve been thinking of vocation and life and my bloggy purpose. You see, I will admit to you that I suffer from Blog Envy. It’s enough of a common occurrence that I see Blog Envy itself blogged about fairly often, usually by those of us who aren’t crafty or can’t quite figure out how to take breathtakingly beautiful pictures… or, in my case, both.

You know the drill… don’t be jealous of other people’s online lives. Remember that people only blog about the beautiful stuff. Very rarely do you see the craft fails, the messy rooms, a daily recounting of the bad days. You’ve heard it before.

I am going to go one step further and share with you a recent insight that is going to revolutionize my life, or at least so I hope. I’m about to lay down some real knowledge that practically came to me on the wings of angels with heavenly choirs singing in the background.

Are you ready?

OK, listen up.

You CAN’T have it all.

Seriously. You just can’t.

You can’t have the perfect Waldorf homeschool AND a perfectly clean home AND wonderful perfect handcooked organic meals AND be the perfect wife and mother AND glide through your day in a state of perfect peace.

Really, you just can’t.

And it doesn’t matter how hard you try or how badly you want it, you just can’t.

It’s not a matter of setting your will.

It’s not a matter of getting your ducks in a row.

It’s not a matter of wanting it bad enough. As my grandma used to say, God rest her soul, “If wishes were pigs, bacon would always be on sale.”

Because– and here’s the kicker– life is messy. Not a little bit messy like when you run up to the bathroom quick and your kid overturns a basket of toys, but A LOT messy, like when you disappear upstairs to grab an hour or two of naptime with the babies and your husband made the television disappear because he was tired of them fighting over the Wii and your kids decide that they’d like nothing better than to surprise you with something that involved yogurt, eggs, and your living room rug.

REALLY messy.

You only have so much to give. Honest. Time? Energy? Money? Patience? All finite resources. Eventually, you will run out and will need to replenish. Yes, even you, Perfect Blogger with the Perfect House and Perfect Children.

How do those perfect online mamas do it? I honestly don’t know. I wish I did. I’d love for them to run a free online workshop. Of course, while I was busy listening to it my children would probably stage a coup and take over the house or something.

Ms. Frizzle of Magic School Bus fame often exhorted her students to “Take chances, make mistakes, get messy!” I swear, I need to cross stitch this on a sampler and staple it to my forehead.

No, you can’t have it all.

You can’t have someone else’s life.

But you can make yours your own, and embrace it, warts, hardships, challenges and all.

Strive for the best, but along the way don’t be afraid to take chances.

Make mistakes.

Get messy.

And then take some pictures and post them so I don’t feel so alone.

11 comments to Monday Musings: Having it all

  • Oh my goodness, LOVE this post!!! I love the word picture of your kids staging a coup.

    Such an encouragement – thank you for writing what so many of us are thinking! My dishes will stay in the sink today as I take a deep breath and go run my errands.

    And I’ll say this – when I get to my boiling over point, I’ve learned that there are THREE things this not-perfect mom needs:

    1. A walk.

    2. A deep breath

    3. A hug from my husband.

    :)

    Thanks again!

  • Yes!

    Here’s to NOT doing it all, not even trying to do it all, and loving life anyway :-)

  • Amen to that! :) As a new business owner I find myself wondering how on earth I see others accomplishing so much in a day. There are only so many hours in a day and the most important thing is my family. I have come to the conclusion that I need to keep my to-do list shorter and do it the best I can. If that means I don’t get to a few things, well… that’s okay.

    I like your authenticity.

  • Kelly

    Hi Annette, this is one of the hardest lessons to learn! As mothers we can work hard all day long and still feel inadequate. And I just wanted to mention here that I LOVE your Seasons of Joy guides! They are so thorough and well-organized and are one of my favorite resources. I have two little girls and I run a small playschool in my home and your guides have been so helpful in my planning, thank you! :)

    • Annette

      Thank you so much for your kind words! And I think this is a truth that is really hitting me hard lately. Life with six just isn’t the same as it was when I only had one or two, and I need to remind myself that the relationships are what matter most.

  • So true. I feel the envy and the desire for perfection and ability to ‘do’ more creeping up very slowly and have to make a concious decision to fight it and come back to reality. Life is messy and I can’t have everything.

  • Thank you……this seems to be a very common theme in blogging, and maybe especially Waldorf circles. Every single day I have to learn this lesson. I have unrealistic expectations for myself, goals that are beyond ambitious, thoughts of ‘TODAY will be the day when I finally get it all together’.

    In fact I’ve started including the less-than-perfect and even the slightly embarrassing in my blog. Post of a great day….but include a snapshot of my overflowing sink o’ dishes. Blogging had started to feel dishonest to me, and I feel like I needed to share those messy moments.

    Thanks again (steered here from Carrie at Parenting Passageway) although I suspect that I’ll have to learn this lesson the hard way. Again.

    Warmly,
    Carrie

  • Acacia Moore

    Fabulous. Just what I needed at the beginning of my v. first year of homeschooling Waldorf Kindergarten. It seems so simple, especially through the eyes of perfect blogger mommies, but just as any job on top of an already full time job, home schooling on top of parenting is tough! Thanks for the Ms. Frizzle quote (yay magic school bus!) I am indeed painting and framing a little sign that says that quote! I need that reminder every day.

  • kim

    Thank you so very much for this post. I have been pressuring myself way too much lately and I know it’s from reading a lot of those perfect blogs. I’ve been feeling like a failure because I can’t seem to teach my children without them fighting, learn to knit and sew, cook organic meals, raise chickens and other homesteading skills, be infinitely patient and still have a joyful household. And then I think, geez, why cant ii do it with three kids when she has four, five, six, etc. kids. You’re so right. It. Is. Impossible. Here’s to a great ordinary day! I think I am going on a blog strike, lol.