Ah, I feel I am just now emerging from the great fog that surrounds moms with newborns and toddlers at home. My kids are now 6, 5 and 3 – which means that we survived days with three kids ages three and under. I’ve watched some old videos recently and thought back to those days where showers were few, the house was a constant disaster and more often than not there was spit-up on my clothes or in my hair (so gross).
I know those days are often difficult, lonely, mundane. I had many days where I just felt like I was operating in an isolated bubble, disconnected to everyone. I wanted to still serve others, but what could that look like with these littles in tow?
Here are a few things that worked for me in this particular season:
I know, that seems so simple, right? Honestly, before I had children, I don’t think I really had much faith in or understanding of prayer. The book, A Praying Life by Paul Miller, was so helpful in getting me started. When you are stinky, sleep-deprived and bound to your couch while you nurse your infant, you can still pray. As you scan through Facebook and read status updates, you can pray. When you are up at 4 a.m. and all is quiet, you can pray. As you are walking around your neighborhood pushing the stroller along, you can ask God to move in the hearts of these people. Anywhere and at all times, we can pray . . . and God has so much that He intends to do through the prayers of His saints.
When you are bound to your couch nursing your infant, you can still pray. @suhangela
2. Write Encouraging Letters, Texts, and Emails
I want to do such a better job at this. In just a few minutes, you can write thoughtful words and send them to someone. I have been on the receiving end of these words and man, even three sentences jotted down or a short text can make such an impact. For those other moms like you that are out there, feeling alone or struggling with how God is working in them in this season – all the Truth that you need to be reminded of, they need it, too. And as you write, more often than not, God is reminding you as well. So many times I’ve texted something about God’s sovereignty and His working all things for our good and His glory – and then I’ve looked around and realized that yes, this is true, even for me, even right now.
Likely, there are people that you are connected to that are sick, or having babies, or having a difficult time, and they could use a meal dropped off at the door so there is one less thing they need to worry about in a day. Now, when I sign up to deliver a meal – it is usually the only single thing that I plan to get done that day. Between naps and changing diapers and tantrums – I know it can seem impossible to get even one thing accomplished. But, having received meals in times of transition or grieving, I know it means much to the person that you have made such an effort for. I have felt so so loved by people showing up and hugging me, giving me food and asking how things are going.
4. Have People Live With You
This is obviously a little more involved than the previous ideas. I’ve written before about having people live with us, but I want to say again – it is both wonderful and difficult, both blesses you and stretches you. We’ve had people live with us during various seasons, including when we had little babies. We’ve mostly had women who were college students, family members or about-to-be-marrieds. Though opening up your home does provide a room and a bed, it also serves people by allowing them into your lives, to be a part of your family, which I’ve found is so much more of a blessing.
Having people live with you both blesses you and stretches you. @suhangela
Being a mom with young kids at home is a special season with all sorts of wonders and joys, and limits and responsibilities. Some days, serving your family and keeping the kids alive is all you can do. But, other days there is grace to do a little more and to serve the Body, even amidst the craziness and chaos.