Dear moms: For Christmas, give yourself a break

It’s the kind of story that time and distance makes funny.

In the moment? Not so much.

I recently checked in with a friend on Facebook who is in the process of starting her own business.

Her response (via Facebook) epitomizes life as a mompreneuer: “I am totally behind the eight ball and did not realize how long it would take me to actually label list and organize everything that I made. Not to mention (my son) was puking in the parking lot at Joanne fabrics about an hour ago and I’m exhausted. We chose to homeschool so I have both boys home and life is a giant mess! … I’m quite overwhelmed and I’m not sure exactly which direction I’m taking this business after my initial products other than … having a good product for my friends and family and branching out to new customers.”

Raise your hand if you have been there.

Yep. My hand’s up, too.

We’re all doing too much … whether or not, really, we’re mompreneuers. Because there’s just SO MUCH to do.

And while I am trying to embrace the “just say ‘no'” motto, the reality is that with three kids and a husband to care for, this website to run and other relationships to maintain, a relaxing life just isn’t in the cards.

So I’ve decided to join the “give some grace” club. Unfortunately, we typically find it so easy to give other people grace, yet so hard to find some for ourselves.

My friend — the one with the new business, sick child, etc., etc.?

Here’s a woman who is kind, generous and only trying to do good things in the world and you know what she worried about? Misspelling something on her Facebook site.

I told her it’s no big deal, most people won’t notice and those who do care more about her than her spelling, all of which is true.

And I don’t think she felt any better.

Moms, we’re so quick to give each other a break.

Let’s give ourselves a break.

Here’s what I’ve done these past two weeks — Prepared my house for Christmas, including doing pretty much all the shopping and wrapping; bought Target gift cards and “thank you” Christmas cards for all ELEVEN of my kids’ teachers, plus candy and  “thank you” notes for our two bus drivers; planned the next three weeks of motherbility; organized a date night with my husband; volunteered with my son’s Boy Scouts troop; put together a surprise out-of-town trip for my family as part of my kids’ Christmas; baked Christmas cookies to be decorated this weekend; grocery shopped; cooked meals; set aside one-on-one time with each of my kids; washed, dried and folded all the laundry and vacuumed out the minivan.

As I write this, the car is packed for our trip, the dishwasher (that I ran) is finishing up its dry cycle, I’m waiting for my youngest to get off the school bus so I can make her lunch and finish my to-do list before picking my other kids up from school in few hours and telling them about our surprise trip.

You know what I’m stressing about? I didn’t finish the article I planned for Tuesday. Also, the bathrooms need to be cleaned.

I mean, seriously, people. My response to any other person in that scenario would be, “Good Lord, woman. Cut yourself some slack.” And I’d be right.

So I’m going to try it.

My goal was to post every day next week. There’s no way that’s happening.

I have two posts ready, and I think that’s going to be it. I’m shutting the computer down for 2017. (OK, not really. Because Facebook.)

But for Christmas this year, I’m giving myself a break — a break from doing SO MUCH and a break from beating myself up for things I didn’t do or didn’t do as well as I’d like.

And I urge all of you to do the same. (Also, cut others some slack, too, if that’s an issue for you. We’re all trying here.)

So this is it, my final thoughts for you as this year comes to a close, adapted from Numbers 6:24-26 — “May the Lord bless you and keep you, may the Lord make his face shine upon you and be gracious unto you, may the Lord lift up his countenance upon you and give you what only he can give you, his peace.”

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