The great myth
I get asked frequently how I do it all. Which makes me and my husband laugh. It would probably also make my children laugh, if they could understand what that meant.
I’m sure the inquirers don’t mean to imply that I literally do it all, but it’s a subtle message to me that in some way, I somehow convey on this blog that I do “it” all. It’s simply not true.
Sure, I do a lot. I choose to write frequently on this blog and others, to accept a book offer and write it, to cook from scratch, to occasionally sew, to homeschool my preschooler, to work part-time as a web designer for a non-profit organization, to take regular care of our home, and to generally do those marvelous daily things that make up the roles of wife and mom. I also enjoy being a friend, daughter, sister, and main correspondent for the family as we live overseas.
Wow. That does sound like a lot. But it’s not everything. For everything I do, I don’t do something else. Every choice we make in life is both a choice to do something and a choice to not do something.
When we make the decision to spend time, energy, and money to pursue a task, there’s something else from which we’re subtracting that time, energy, and money. We’re all given 24 hours in a day, a body that requires rest, and a finite number in our bank accounts.
So no, Virginia, I don’t do it all. I do a lot, and I bet you do, too. I bet you choose to do things I don’t do; probably things I’d like to do but just can’t in this season of my life. We all do. None of us does it all.
- I don’t grow my own food. I’d love to one day, but for now, we just don’t have the space or the time.
- I don’t knit. I don’t know how. I’d love to learn.
- I don’t can. I don’t have the equipment or the space to store the canned goods. One day, maybe.
- I don’t keep a perfectly clean house. Truly.
- I watch almost no TV.
- I have a huge pile of books I still haven’t read, and I don’t see any free time on the horizon to tackle them.
- I don’t have hours of time to linger over coffee with all the women I want to do so with.
- I don’t spend as much time playing with my kids as I want. Or need.
- I don’t get enough sleep.
- And I definitely don’t work out as much as I need to.
I say these things not to flagellate myself, or to squelch any semblance of a good mood. I’m simply being honest. We must pursue excellence in our work, but not perfection.
And at the end of the day, we need to trust that God gave us the energy to do those things to which He called us, and no more. Tomorrow is another day to strap on the apron and get back to work, doing what we can.
There’s no reason to feel defeated at the false notion that there’s someone out there who “does it all.” That person doesn’t exist.
What about you? What don’t you do?
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