Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Queen of the Castle: Week 2

Welcome to this Week's episode of 'Queen of the Castle'! (picture won't load, sorry)
In which we read Chapter 2, and discover about over-commitment, non-conforming and how to fly!

Colletta's post summarises the Chapter beautifully, so please go visit her to know what it is about: these are just my own thoughts...

Review on last week: Improving the Balance of my Life...

Total disaster! Ended up with me furious, the Hub mad, and Youngest in a sulk. Appears they didn't really want to be 'focused on' and I resented the fact they didn't appreciate the effort I was putting in....

Yeah, yeah, stupid, selfish, unnecessary...we've returned to drifting, but with clean laundry, and I'm trying to space out the chores better for myself...

Now, this week:

What LBW writes about not over committing outside the home is a fine theory, but in practise it's not always that straightforward. I totally agree with her priorities- God, then family, then community, but sometimes the time ratio between those three does not reflect that.
I have given this much thought over the years since I had Eldest, and there are two basic categories that, to me, can and often do, tip the time and commitment balance, and they can be of equal weight.

Sometimes the 'need' you see in the community is simply your call, but answering it will affect your whole family?

To give a personal illustration, as a part-time school teacher, I am involved in the lives of quite literally nearly two hundred children (not including past pupils, now teenagers, who continue to stop and talk, chat, discuss things). When a problem or emergency arises, by default, as a mother and teacher, I can often be involved. When teenagers fall out with their parents they need their friends to be there for them.
All these times of service I count as my call, and my privilege, and my children are invariably involved.

Which leads to my second consideration, that sometimes, as your own children stagger through their teenage years, you need to have other young people around in order to cope with your own! Its easier to get five to turn off the TV, sit down for a proper meal and discuss things, than one. And sometimes, all they need is a safe environment to be themselves and the issues simply melt away!

I don't suggest that LBW means to turn away from one's Christian duty, but its just that some homes are more of a Community Center than others!

I do like the paragraph at the end which tells us we can all be different and not to compare yourself to others. This I find difficult.
Other Mothers always seem to-
be more organised,
be better dressed,
have cleaner cars,
have tidy sitting rooms,
have children who practise their music without a row and do neat handwriting,
and create a wonderful first impression when you arrive at their homes with weed free entrances.

That's before you even look into their kitchens, which are immaculate...heck! even their dogs behave!
This, I can work on...

And finally, the Bible verse for the week, which made me laugh out loud:

Isaiah 40:28-31

Do you not know?
Have you not heard?
The LORD is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He will not grow tired or weary,
and his understanding no one can fathom.

(So far, yes, absolutely...)

He gives strength to the weary
and increases the power of the weak.
Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;
but those who hope in the LORD
will renew their strength.

(...and I get this, that the Lord holds up those without the strength to hold themselves...)

They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint.

(...Oh yes? OH YES? Its very beautiful imagery, but along the lines of flying pigs!
Now, if Isaiah had finished with something like...

'Flying pigs will they see flapping round their homes;
they will run and run and although weary unto death
they will, with God's grace, keep on running,
they will walk and stagger and faint
and the Lord will pick them up and carry them.'

...that would have been more realistic to us homemakers!)

So this week I will try to keep up with the nitty gritty of the chores,
and not compare myself to all the other Mary Poppins 'practically-perfect-in-every-way' mothers out there!

Oh! And about that suggestion to leave the Hub with the home for a weekend? You've got to be kidding! I'd be traded in for a more compliant model in the blink of an eye!

One of my friends once asked her husband: 'What did your last servant die of?'
Back came the reply: 'Insubordination.'

Says it all really...


collettakay said...

First, I love your new layout!

Second, you have such a gift for writing. I love your post. I did a "summary" post and this would be exactly how I would write my "feelings" post!

This was great!

Louba said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog! Your alternative ending to the verse made me laugh out loud :)

Elaine said...

I really don't think we should measure our success as a homemaker on what others do. Sometimes their perfect home is an illusion, and keeping things perfectly clean can get in the way of the primary job, which is to keep a happy home. Everyone has different priorities, and things that would drive me up the wall are of no consequence to someone else, and vice versa. I also think that the homemaker should not buy into the "servant" mentality, and that you need to take care of your own wants and needs as well as your family's wants and needs, because if you don't take care of yourself you will after a while have nothing left to give to your family. That is much easier for me now, of course, since both my husband and I are retired and it's just the two of us at home. However, your kids may strike out on their own but they are always a part of your home.

Susan R. Mills said...

Great post! These are some issues I've been struggling with. Thanks for sharing.

Trishia said...

Ms. Heckety, my, my, I see what I've been missing out on. I agree, you should help Isaiah with his writings and just for the record: I love all your imperfections (and sink of dirty dishes) which make you perfectly you!


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