This past Saturday I had my first opportunity to take a "mom break" from BOTH boys. It was scary and stressful and I got lost (3 times), and I called Brad crying not sure if I could do this and enjoy myself (3 times).
You see, I am a breast feeder. With both my children I gave birth not thinking I would be heading back to work, so we don't have many bottles lying around the house. Yes, I know this is crazy and whatnot but I just honestly find it easier to not deal with bottles. I mean come on, half of what I need to leave the house is attached to me! I do love my pump and used is everyday for over a year with my first child, but when number 2 came along it has suddenly seemed like a very difficult task to do. Or to do anything else for that matter.
Before you go thinking I am absolutely nutso, I have gotten out by myself a few times in the last 6 weeks since Micah was born but I am always rushed. As in Brad is frantically trying to keep up with me at Whole Foods, because I have to by some milk, find that awesome dehydrated kale my sister gave me, find something to eat since I haven't eaten in 7 hours, AND we have to go pick up that double stroller at Babies R Us. All in 90 minutes because that's when Micah SHOULD want to eat again. Sound relaxing? Right. Or that *one time* I got to go out to eat lunch with Brad while both boys were napping. I'm sure he enjoyed that I kept checking the time, kept asking him the time, and was ready to go when he was halfway through his burger.
Thank God when Asher fell and needed stitches we were at my mom's who just happened to still have a bag of frozen milk in her freezer AND a bottle in her cupboard. So by complete accident Uncle Mike got to feed his nephew his first bottle, and I was shocked that he took it, and without incident. Add this new discovery with the fact that we have had the most UNhealthy 3 weeks ever and I started itching to take a little alone time.
Luckily it's strawberry season! I love strawberries, I love to be outdoors, and I love the drive to the strawberry patch. Score!
I like to do a little preserving every year and strawberry jam is at the top of the list. It's easy and tastes way better than store bought. So this was the goal, to pick 12 quarts of strawberries to get enough to make jam.
It took me a while to relax after getting lost so many times and then feeling like my time meter was running out (yes, I had left milk for Brad). But man, I'm telling you, the outdoors is definitely my place.
Once I got into the grove of picking I realized it was an opportunity to just pray. I had been missing my time with God lately and I could feel that need to be in His presence. I found myself telling God I missed Him too, but I knew quite well it wasn't HIM that was skimping on our time together. It was me. My days had suddenly started beginning at 530 and went until 10. And you had better believe that if both boys were napping in the afternoon, I was passed out too! I am a nightime devotion person (story for another post) and when the second child barely makes it in bed by 10, I can barely eek out a verse from exhaustion.
You know what though? God will meet you wherever you are and picking my strawberries in a row far removed from others, there He was. It was like I was being cleansed. The sun, the sweat, the quiet. I had all sorts of epiphanies I am embarrased to share. Cheesy ones like "You have to work to find the best strawberries" and then relating that to life. Or, "these flies that are distracting me from praying are like the distractions of life". God knows me well because if they had been mosquitoes, I would have been OUT of there!
After and hour and a half, 12 quarts of strawberries, and a slight burning of my shoulders I felt awesome again. It has carried me through the week (up until yesterday when over 3 hours of screaming between 2 boys did me in) and has sort of "reset" my God time. I am still going all day from sun up to sun down but I haven't let the craziness of the day distract me from that prayer time. I realized that yes, I want to sit and spend quiet time with Him, but at this time in my life I need to make it an all day thing, during mealtimes, in the car, during tantrums, ALL of the time.