Friday, November 30, 2007

Just ask for help!

I make is a habit to skim every day. I like to know the major things going on. This is not a fun story to read, so don't read it unless you have the stomach for it today. Basically a mother killed her two toddlers in a store bathroom.

My thought was, why did she let it get to that point? I know that feeling, that one where if one more person makes one more noise, I may just go over the edge. This woman may very well have been a single mother. Her two children may have, in her mind, "ruined" every opportunity she might have otherwise had. I have no doubt that her life was incredibly hard.

What makes me sad though, is that nobody saw this coming and reached out to her. We moms gotta stick together. If we're having a day like that, we have to CALL somebody. If we see someone in that mode, we have to offer to take the kids, or just offer a cup of tea and some encouragement. We have to take breaks for ourselves, so that when we're done taking that break, we can be better mothers. I don't know what this looks like for you. Maybe it means re-prioritizing the family budget so you can have your house cleaned once a month (I did this once. I felt like a queen!). Maybe it means trading childcare with a friend so you can go sit at Starbucks and read for a couple of hours. Maybe it means explaining to your husband your intense need for a break so he can watch kids for a while while you Christmas shop. Maybe rather than doing anything else, you would rather sit in the bathtub and stare at the wall for an hour.

No matter what sounds fun to you, we have to make sure we do this! This is not selfish, this is our lives and the lives of our kids we're talking about, or at the very least our quality of life. If you don't have kids, offering to care for a friends' kids so they can take a break is HUGE. If I am finding myself snapping about every little thing, and I can't answer questions kindly, it usually means I am overdue for a break. For me, it also usually means I haven't read my Bible in a couple days. Watching TV, although enticing to me, doesn't fill me back up. So if I need a break and I choose to do that, I can count on not being much better off after that kind of a break. Spending some time talking to God makes a difference.

Our society is so isolated, but we (especially as Christians!) don't have to be. People have said for decades, "It takes a village to raise a child." Why would we ever think we could possibly do it alone?


  1. How profoundly sad. Yes, we need to have the humility to ask for help and realize in our independent-super-woman driven society, that interdependence is a much healthier way to live!

  2. Just what I needed (maybe not wanted) to hear. Thanks for the reminder, Sara. Very convicting. I am the queen of isolation when I'm going thru hard times. Ugh (and I'm pretty sure I learned that from family)

  3. I think it is a natural tendency to "hunker down" when things are tough, and it's not all bad. Putting our entire focus on our family and on rest is not a bad thing, to a point. At the same time, the big "me-time" thing is not where I'm going with this either. There is a balance.

    Being a mommy calls us to become (daily!) incredibly unselfish. We have to lay down our lives, following Christ's example. However, there is a limit to our humanity. We do get tired. I think we have to constantly be in prayer about which we need to do - lay down our lives, or take a break and regroup. :)

  4. That story horrified me and yet a part of me understands her plight. While I have never dreamt of hurting my children like that, I have longed for my childless days when I had nothing but time and no one pulling on me 24/7. So sad...being a stay at home mom is very isolating--maybe if she had Jesus she could have at least turned to prayer to get her through instead of doing what she did.