3:12:00 PM

Finding balance as a parent seems darn-near impossible at times. As mamas we are always trying to balance way too many things at the same time, trying to make everything perfect and everyone around us happy. But at what cost? Our health? Our sanity? Our own happiness?

In a world where we are constantly comparing our lives to that of Instagram and Pinterest, it is becoming harder than ever to find true contentment in the lives that we live. It would be nice to have picture perfect everything, but it's just not REAL. And at the end of the day, I am a REAL woman, going through REAL circumstances that sometimes leave my house and my life a little messy. And that's okay.

I am learning a very important lesson in this stage of my life, with work and taking care of a home and little humans and a husband. That at the end of the day, I can't do it all. I sometimes have to say "no" even if it is to something seemingly good. I have to prioritize my list and make sure that the things that matter most to me are not the things that get dropped. I want to make my home neat and tidy and functional. I want to play with my kids when they get home from school or I get home from work. I want to be able to provide healthy meals for my family and spend time with my husband at the end of each day. I want to provide my portion of the income to be able to afford the life that we live. I want to be a better hair stylist and make each one of my clients feel special and beautiful each time they sit in my chair. I want to go on family vacations and give my kids amazing memories that will last a lifetime. I want to be a good example of a Godly woman and love others as Jesus has loved me. Whew! It seems like I have a LOT of how do I knock anything off of that list? They are all such great goals for my life.

I think the answer lies in separating the things that are absolutely necessary from the things that may just look nice from the outside. For me, playing with my kids at the end of the day is much more important than having the kitchen clean. Yes, that may mean I might have to spend 25 more minutes after they go to bed tidying up or go to bed with dirty dishes one night, but for me...I want to be a part of my kids memories, not a bystander to their memories. I don't want to live my life on the sidelines. I want to be in the game! And that is REAL. Isn't that what we all want? To be a part of our own lives. A part of our children's lives and memories and struggles. Not so bogged down with so many tasks that there is no time left for life.

So if you need permission to leave the dishes in the sink and run around the house with a super hero cape on, here it is (and I am talking to myself here as well). Be free from this cage that society puts us all in. Be REAL. Be true. And most of all, be a part of your own life, not an onlooker of someone else's seemingly "perfect" life. Because I'm going to let you in on a little secret. No one is perfect. No one has it all together. Everyone feels the pressure. And there might be someone right now comparing themselves to you thinking you have it all let's all stand together and lift each other up. As women. As mothers. As sisters and daughters and friends. And give ourselves and each other a little grace. Stop putting so much pressure on each other and comparing our situation to the woman next to us, because if we all were honest we would all feel a little insecure about something and then maybe we all could start living our lives instead of bustling through them. God has given us grace, now let's extend that to ourselves and to others around us. It is very freeing!

"..My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.."
2 Corinthians 12:8

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