Are you driven? Which direction are you headed?
photo credit: Thomas Anderson used by license
I remember when my eldest was little. My husband was the sole bread winner. We lived on 2-acres in Paso Robles wine country. It sounds pretty, but ours was 2-acres of weeds.
For awhile it was just me and FishBoy. Due to miscarriages, he didn’t become a big brother until he was on his way to four. I had one little guy and a big house and no other obligations.
Only once did my husband ask what I did all day. I don’t remember the circumstances or what I was complaining about. I know he was tired.
But, I remember it.
Not because he was mean. He totally wasn’t. Not because he was accusing. He wasn’t that either.
But, because for the longest time I condemned myself inside because I didn’t get more done in a day. Call me a perfectionist overachiever.
Because I am. Or at least I was.
For years I was, as my mom phrases it, driven. I would stay up late cleaning the house because that was the only time it would stay clean. I would make handmade Christmas presents because I couldn’t stand not to give a gift despite our lack of money. I would invite half the church over for Easter because I could.
I went over and above the call of duty on a number of occasions because I wanted to prove myself.
(I’m still not sure whom I was trying to impress.)
In my old age, I’ve gotten tired. I still bite off more than I can chew. I still overbook myself. I still say yes when I should say no, but it’s usually because it’s cool stuff that I want to do.
I’m getting better about not feeling like I have to prove something. I’m driven, yes, but really, I’m finally driven in the right direction.
It’s not that I wasn’t a Christian in my overachiever mama days. I was. But, my prayers did not have the fervor they do now.
I was desperate then, don’t get me wrong. Of course I was! I had all these little kids and babies running around. But, I thought that if I only tried hard enough, if I “worked on” this thing or that thing, if I improved myself, then my problems would dissipate. I would have that bright, happy, shiny life that I figured other people had because they were more with it than I.
Over the last couple years we’ve had challenges that there was no way I could fix. No matter how late I stayed up, that problem was not going to get resolved. It was truly out of my hands. No striving could meet those challenges. We’ve seen much growth in those particular challenges, but life is never easy or unflawed, is it?
Some days I get worried about something and am too panicked to pray, so I call out to friends I know will pray for me. Good days fond me writing in a spiral-bound notebook, pouring out my heart and my fears to God, being brave, despite the fears.
I still have my fears. I still have my big plans. I am still driven. I’m just driven beyond my own resources to the One who can take care of it all.