Life · Motherhood

Expectations

Last week was a bit rough for me. Tuesday morning in particular I felt a mixture of burnt out and heightened irritability. I remember having such a hard time as I searched for a quote to lift my spirits, then I came across this one.

I realized that at the core of what I was feeling was disappointment in my expectations.

That morning in particular I felt completely defeated by unmet expectations. I felt like I was failing as a mom because I couldn’t get my girls to complete the simple task of understanding that their sole responsibility in the morning is getting ready for school. As I felt the weight of that, I began to feel the weight of everything else sort of pushing me further down the hole of discouragement. As I looked around my unkept house, all the things that were out of place only further heightened my discouragement in myself.

And then Celeste approached me and gave me a letter she wrote to me while her and Elysse were having breakfast.

The second I read this I burst into tears. Her words were so powerful to me. It was like hearing God speak to me through her and telling me, you are doing the best you can. They are doing the best they can. Don’t let your expectations shadow that effort.

I immediately walked over to Celeste and hugged her and thanked her for her encouraging words. And that morning, somehow in the rush of trying to get out of the house, time seemed to slow down. It was 7:45am – we should all have been in the car ready to go to school. Instead all three of us had all the emotions, tears streaming down our faces and tight hugs being exchanged. I didn’t care if we were late, what I cared about in that moment was making sure my daughters knew I loved them, and that we could each talk through this and share our feelings. Expectations completely thrown out the window.

And somehow we made it out the door and got to school at 8:00am.

Celeste also wrote me these words.

And my sweet Elysse tried writing me a note too, and at her young age of 6 she managed to write “I love you Yvonne, you are the…” before bursting into tears and telling me she tried writing small like her sister but couldn’t and she didn’t have time to finish it. As she cried I held her close and told her I loved her effort and how much it meant to me that they could express how they were feeling and share with me such encouraging words. I guess I should explain that she never calls me by my name, I’m always “mama” but when she writes, she loves to write my given name.

I was reminded in those notes from my girls that God will indeed strengthen me and help me. He will hold me up. I never would have imagined that message would be spoken directly to me through my daughters words.

When I am unable to meet expectations I place on myself or feel disappointed by expectations I place on others (yes, I know this is unfair), it helps to hear these words and know that I am not doing this alone. God is with me, one day at a time. Even when I feel overwhelmed or alone, I realize I am not. He is with me.

He’s with you.

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