It never fails. Every November I find myself imagining a glorious holiday season. I close my eyes and see myself in pearls, a frilly half-apron, and heels, baking incredible pies in a spotless kitchen. I don’t know where this comes from. I don’t even wear heels anymore. They would slow me down while I’m chasing my toddler through Target. Maybe I have seasonal delusions from inhaling too much apple-cinnamon air freshener.
The problem is that I somehow believe the images in imagined scenarios like this are what the holidays should be like, and then I convince myself that’s what they look like at all the other houses on my street. When my reality is more likely to be a charred pan of break-and-bake cookies that were thrown into the oven at the last minute, I imagine all the women in my neighborhood creating a Martha Stewart Christmas.
The bigger the gap between my imagination and my reality, the bigger my perceived failure grows.
Lately I’ve been feeling as though I’m failing in most areas of my life. We’ve started homeschooling this year, and at times it’s overwhelming. I’m perpetually exhausted. The list of undone chores has grown longer and longer, which is impressive because I never leave the house. Half-finished projects and tasks are scattered all over. I feel as though I haven’t been giving one hundred percent to anyone or anything.
Mostly I have felt as though I’m failing as a mom.
Today, during a conversation with the kids about the Christmas story, I found myself fixated on Mary. For just a minute, I tried to imagine what it was like to be responsible for carrying and delivering the Son of God. If I’m feeling all this pressure to be the perfect mom, how much heavier was the weight on Mary’s shoulders as the mother of God incarnate? I wondered what must have been going through her mind when it came time to deliver the baby and all she had was a stable full of barnyard animals.
Please continue reading this post at The Glorious Table. While you’re there, read through some of the fantastic posts and be encouraged.