Thursday, October 17, 2013

Don't Mess with Mommy Time (Even if You Have to Poop)

When I dropped Micah off in his classroom the other night, I could just sense that something was "off."  He was more wiggly than usual and he kept putting his hand down the back of his pants.  I asked him if he needed to go potty and he just got annoyed with me and blew me off.  Still, I hung back for just a moment as he joined up with the large group of kids as the started their programming.  As the other children's attention turned toward the worship leader, my boy was just as intently focused.....on sneaking his hand back under his waistband to do God knows what to his butt.  I walked right in there and led him out of the room and then muttered under my breath as I impatiently waited for him to finish using the bathroom.

He was cutting in on MY TIME with this foolishness, you see.  I realized later that I wasn't annoyed because he was missing his worship time with his peers or even annoyed because he hadn't told anyone he had to go potty.  What annoyed me was that I was stuck there, waiting outside the boys bathroom for The World's Pokiest Pooper to do his thing when I should have been sipping my latte and listening to Pandora.

But allow me to back up for a moment. 

I have a very hard time saying "no" to people when they ask for my help.  This especially applies to my co-workers asking me to pick up their shift if they have something else going on.  I can't tell you how many times my brain has been screaming at me, "Say NO!!! Say NO!!!" only to hear the word "sure" come out of my mouth. 

I've gotten much better at this over the last year.  That's not to say that I've become more stingy and selfish in how I help out (although I'm sure there are a few who would argue that to be the case), but instead I have developed a higher level of appreciation for my time.  I touched on this a little when I wrote about why I quit my job, but the short version is that I have been learning a lot lately about how I want to really be smart about how I spend my time and who I'm spending it with.  Also, I need to prioritize the little free time that I do have and use in an an intentional manner.

Case in Point - Family Church Night

I have made it very clear to my recent employers, family, and my friends that this particular night is basically off limits.  My days are filled up to the brim with making meals, doing laundry, shuttling a kid to preschool, leading my small group, grocery shopping, and attempting to keep my house in some semblance of order.  Almost immediately after I put Thomas down for his nap, I go change my clothes and get ready to head to my evening job, where I wait tables until ten or eleven at night.  When I get home, I finally get a little while to spend with my husband and that is usually done at the same time that laundry is being folded, lunches are being packed, a blog post is being written, the family budget meeting is taking place, or the toys are being gathered.  By the time I fall into bed, I wonder where the heck the whole day went as I think about all the things left unchecked on my To Do List.

But these nights are different.  We get to eat supper together as a family and then head to church.  Evan goes to his men's group and we check all three kids into the child care at church.  Then I head to the coffee shop, order a pumpkin spice latte and settle into to comfy chair for a solid 1.75 hours of QUIET time with my Bible, my coffee, and my God.

It is absolutely crucial to my well-being.  It is life-giving.  It sustains me.  I do the best I can to get in the Word every day, but I always seem to fail.  It is this time that I rely on to re-connect with the Lord. 

And there I was, tapping my toe and scrolling through Instagram, muttering to myself with annoyance because my boy's bowel movement was infringing on my sacred time.  Believe me, the irony is not lost on me.  I know I should have been more patient and loving in that situation because it's not like he purposely prolonged his pooping to provoke me (see what I did there?).  Honestly, I asked him to forgive me for that.  My point is that I have found that I treasure that time so very much because part of its appeal is that I get to take a break from things like sneaking into the boys' bathroom to wipe a poopy butt.

I've been asked to pick up shifts for people at work and I have said no....over and over and over again.  Once, I overheard a co-worker talking about how she really needed someone to work for her that night and someone brought up my name as a suggestion.  She promptly shook her head and said, "Nope.  She's got CHURCH." 

I smiled a little because I was glad to be spared the requirement of turning her down.

And next week I'm going to make Micah go potty before we leave the house or I'm going to make Evan drop him off.  :) 

Don't mess with Mommy Time.

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