Friday, October 2, 2009

Good-bye Mountaintop, Hello Loneliness




Whereas last week I had a dear friend accompanying me all through the day and helping in the kitchen, this week I fell into a serious housekeeping slump. The contrast between this week and last was stark. It hit me again that one of the hardest parts of being a stay-at-home parent is spending my days apart from other adults.

Photo from Wikimedia Commons


Several women have admitted to me that a fear of isolation motivates them to work outside the home. I completely agree that it is easier to have someone working alongside me, pulling me in the right direction. Now that the "mountaintop" moments are over, I need to find proper motivation to press forward.

Adequate sleep, Bible study, a shower, and exercise are invaluable for gaining momentum. But when one or more of them are missing, I have not forged ahead as I should. Other people, like my husband, keep going regardless.

So without making excuses, I'm trying to figure out how I might implement the "two are better than one" principle (Proverbs 15). In this season of life, forging and growing new friendships is difficult, since there are so many things I need to do for my family. To have a friend I need to be a friend, but not at my family's expense. This is my challenge. If I were more faithful in keeping up with the needs of my household, might I have more freedom to befriend others?

Remembering that God is my constant companion is a solace that can help propel me and keep me from grumbling. And I should be grateful for the face-to-face fellowship I have at church, in our small group, at a playgroup, and at a new weekly Bible study. It's too easy to focus on what I don't have rather than what I do. Healthy doses of gratitude would go a long way.

And yet I can't help thinking that there must also be ways for believers to have less solitary lives--that we might encourage one another to live, laugh, and love more abundantly.

Thanks, Company Girls, for walking with me.


5 comments:

Rachel Anne said...

Aww, I'm sorry that your friend is gone. You must have had a great time together.

I think your thoughtful post here is something that resonates with all of us. It IS hard to balance friendships/family/home...seems like friendships suffer first but then if you nurture those, then other things fall by the wayside. sigh.

Doing the Small Things with the Company Girls has been a "small" thing in itself for me..to feel part of something WHILE I'm taking care of the homefront.

I always enjoy your thoughts. Even the wistful ones :)

Teresa McNamara said...

I've felt very isolated in the past nine weeks since I resigned from full time teaching. My days went from being full to overflowing with people to no people and it has been hard to adjust. I start relief teaching (substitute teaching) this week and I'm hoping it will help me to have a better balance

joyceandnorm said...

I agree with you. It is challenging to balance everything. I'm not sure how old your kid/s is/are, but I have a 2.5yo and almost 5mo (who spits up a lot) so it's hard to get out and about, trying to get in naps, etc. It can be tough It is definitely good have a friend by your side. Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us.

secondofwett said...

When I was younger , I craved the company of others,..but once I had a lot of kids in the house, and I've gotten older...I find myself craving solitude and quiet. I must force myself to be in the company of others because I don't want to become withdrawn...but I still need some quiet time to regenerate...yes it's hard to find the right balance.

Kari said...

I can relate to this post. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.