I read a blog post on Momastery by Glennon, a mother of three young children. She wrote that we should not feel guilty if we do not enjoy every moment of motherhood. Some moments are justifiably hard and the old women who tell us to "Carpe Diem and appreciate EVERY single second of parenting because it flies by" only say that because their children are grown up now and they have forgot the temper tantrums. Amen. Read the article. She is a gifted writer.
Here's the real reason behind this blog post. I saw Glennon's picture on her blog. She is thin and beautiful. Somehow that made her less relateable for me. I know that reflects my own insecurities screaming to be freed. Imagine my jaw-dropping shock when I read on Glennon's biography that she struggled with bulimia and alcoholism for 20 years. Her turning point came when she discovered she was drunk, alone, and pregnant. She changed her life, married her baby's daddy, and found God. Wow. This woman is incredible. Suddenly, I wanted to be her friend more than ever! I wanted to reach through the computer and give her a hug!
This being said, why the HECK do some of us strive to hide our weaknesses and pretend like our lives are perfect? It leaves us subject to stereotypes. It makes it all too easy to misjudge one another. Our trials and the chaos in our lives provides us with empathy that links us together as brothers and sisters. God never meant for us to travel the road of life alone. Our burdens need to be shared. I believe that creating a facade of perfection alienates us. A perfect person is a lonely person. If my neighbor was sick but refused to tell me, how could I bring her dinner or babysit her kids? If I never asked my friend to teach me how to make my bread rise, how would I know I had been killing my yeast by boiling it? (True story.)
When I want to talk to someone about how much I miss my brother, I tell someone who has lost a loved one and felt the ache. When I want to express how difficult it is to live within a teacher's budget, I talk to people who have struggled financially. I am not saying that we lay all of our soul bare for all the world to see, or that we whine too much about our trials; I'm just saying that it is difficult to connect with someone who "seems" to live a perfect life. We flock to blogs like Glennon's because her indomitable spirit inspires us. Her honesty is refreshing. Who wants Barbie for a friend, anyway?
So here is some straight-up Emily:
I am passionately in love with my husband. I have the most beautiful, smart, and creative daughters in the history of the world and I play with them every day. I can't smell. I love to talk and write, especially about the gospel of Jesus Christ; maybe I will write a book someday. My house is never completely clean. Reading is my catharsis. Sometimes I wonder if I am doing enough with my life as a stay-home mother, but then I look at my daughters and I feel peace. I know God loves me. I cook from scratch and love to eat my creations too. I wish I was more secure about my body. I would travel the world if I had more money. I love my smile. I am cranky when I am tired. I often forget how blessed I am and wish for a bigger house with a real backyard, despite having witnessed real poverty in the world. I suffer from post-partum depression after every pregnancy. I get anxiety if I am overscheduled. I am a bargain shopper extraordinaire. I naturally love people and think the best of them. I make and cherish friends easily. I try not to say unkind things about other people, but sometimes I still think unkind thoughts. I hate it when people blame their actions on others, so I always take responsibility for my mistakes. I wish I was slower to take offense and quicker to forgive. I love to be the center of attention if I am making people laugh. I do not love to run, but I do love triathlons and my road bike. I have strong opinions and like to be right, but I can admit when I am wrong. I can say sorry. I have always loved to sing, but was insecure about my voice until recently. I cry when others are sad.
Will you tell me more about the true you?