by Jennifer Dyer
A few decades ago a wonderful lady wrote a book to women entitled something like, You Can Have it All. Her goal was to encourage women who needed jobs to prioritize, put God and their family first, and still earn income. But have we taken the concept too far?
Almost everyday I hear moms (and even a few dads) comment on their inability to do it all. It seems as though we have created this ideal mom/dad figure who can feed the baby, train the dog, clean the house, cook dinner, and help with calculus homework all at the same time and without getting stains on their jeans. Oh, and don’t forget that they can actually fit into said jeans… Yes, many of us have met an amazing super woman who never gets her cape dirty as she flies from task to task in her perfectly clean home and lovely jeans, but what about the rest of us?
I mentioned my frustration with my inability to stay on top of things to a friend the other day–as I arrived at her house late. When we screeched into her driveway and opened the van doors, a junk avalanche tried to bury her dog. The car had been clean before we left. On the drive we’d managed to inundate it with a box of spilled cereal, shoes, socks, coats, clothes, roast beef, and juice drippings. (Meanwhile, at home, my dining room table contained the mound of junk I’d taken out of the car to clean it.) The mess was never ending.
I tried to laugh and said, “At least my little one has panties on today,” which is another story….
Anyway, my friend shook her head and said, “No matter how hard you try, you cannot do it all. You need to cut yourself some slack.”
We went on to talk about a few other things until one of her kids came in and announced she needed to leave. My friend frowned after her daughter left and said, “I’d forgotten she even had to be somewhere tonight. Isn’t that sad?”
I laughed and said, “You know you can’t do it all! You are only human.”
It’s an important reminder for all of us. No, I don’t mean we should be lazy slobs, but we must recognize our humanity. As moms (and dads) we have a plethora of things to take care of and sometimes we fall short.
So, the next time you feel like beating yourself up, just remind yourself that you are only human. If you mess up, apologize and move on. If your car has an avalanche and it takes three weeks to find the neighbor’s dog, grab a shovel, smile, and buy some dog biscuits as an apology. Remember, as humans we are made to seek the divine, not be divine. Don’t expect yourself to do it all.
On that note, I’m taking a nap!