I Can Not Do it All

I had something totally different planned for the blog today…but, to be quite honest, I’m feeling a little overwhelmed, so I thought I’d talk about that a bit.

I can not do it all. I’ve always KNOWN that, I just never really wanted to admit it. But I’m ready to now! Oh, I’m there!

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And what really gets me when I’m there is that people I know (moms with kids) are always telling me, “Wait until you have kids. You don’t know what busy is until you have children.” This only makes me feel like…

1. Nothing that’s keeping me busy makes any difference because I don’t have kids
2. I’m not a “good enough” woman because I haven’t done “my duty” of reproducing

While this could be true, and there very well may be a time when I look back and agree, I also feel that when I have children, I won’t be able to do half…probably not even a quarter…of what I do now.

  • I work a full time job
  • I run a photography and promotional business part time
  • I manage social media for various businesses and organizations
  • I run an organizing business part time
  • I volunteer my time at my church
  • I sit on the board of a private academy
  • I’m constantly cooking and baking – be it for my husband or for our friends and family
  • I’m constantly cleaning and organizing around the house

This is all week long. I normally am just as busy on the weekends as I am during the week. Honest! And most weeks there’s at least one additional task thrown into the mix. (For example, last week, every day, I went to my parent’s house and walked the dog for them while they were on vacation.)

I imagine that, when I have children, a LOT of the above will be marked off my “to-do” list. And that’s okay, because kids don’t deserve a mom who is too busy to spend any time with them. I wouldn’t want that for them at all.

But still, I wonder…I photograph families all the time. I don’t have children of my own, but giving those families beautiful memories still matters, right? And let me just add to that – I know SINGLE women who are even BUSIER than I am! My single friend runs the children’s ministry at her church. She doesn’t have children of her own, but sowing into the lives of children still matters, right?

So where do we as women draw the line? How busy is too busy at each stage of life? And how can we support each other without tearing each other down in the process?

I think we have to remember that we are all in different places in our lives. No one set of circumstances is exactly the same as another. They may be similar, but there are so many variables that make lives different!

I also think we have to let go of the “I can have it all” mentality…because…well, we can’t! We sacrifice for the things that are most important to us, and that’s exactly how it should be. If we haven’t worked hard or given up things for that which we love…then life loses some meaning.

Now, this is not meant to bash mothers at all – not at all! I have dear friends who are amazing mothers and I love and respect them to the moon and back! They are doing what I cannot do right now, and they deserve MAJOR props for it! I know women who I firmly believe were literally BORN to BE a mother…and they are functioning in their calling right now!

But it’s kind of like this…

When you’re in high school, everyone wants to know where you’re going to college and what you’re going to do with your life.
When you’re in college and you’re doing something with your life, everyone wants to know when you’re going to get married.
When you get married, everyone wants to know when you’re going to have a baby.
When you have a baby, everyone wants to know when you’re going to have another baby…and another…and another.
When you have kids, everyone wants you to parent the way THEY parented – and they tell you so.
And when those kids reach high school, the cycle starts all over again.

You simply can’t do it all. And, let’s face it – without high school students, there would be no generation left to train. Without college students, there would be no bright young minds learning and pushing the envelope. Without single people, there would not be as much accomplished in the world. Without married couples, there would be a lot of love missing from our lives. Without babies and children, there would be much less joy in the universe.

And then it all begins again. We NEED each other! All of us!

So I guess what I’m saying is this: You can not do it all. And thank goodness for that. It’s okay to accept it! Because if you COULD do it all – what would you need anyone else for? And if you see someone doing things differently than you, don’t make them feel like a lesser person for it. Respect that. Admire that. Support that.

After all, if we were all the same…the world would be a very boring place.

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7 thoughts on “I Can Not Do it All

  1. Well said!!! I am definitely at a place in my life that I could never have imagined when I became a first time mom almost 18 years ago. I love the person I am today, but I wouldn’t change all the things I have gone through to get to this point. Every stage in life has its ups and downs. Keep on writing!!!!!

  2. Kristen, I truly understand how demanding life could be. But you are doing wonderfully. I too feel like Im always on 10 until I burn out and have to take time for myself. Thanks for making me realize I am not alone in this hectic thing called life.

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