My son was born not too long ago, making us parents of 3 under 3. And yes, I still want 10 kids as fast as we can have them. And no, I’m not insane.
What has been really fascinating to me has been the fulfillment of this scripture, you’ve heard it before, “And it came to pass that I, Nephi, said unto my father: I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded, for I know that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them” (1 Nephi 3:7).
As we continue forward on this journey for our family that the Lord has invited us to take, He has really brought this promise to life as He has prepared the way in so many situations and in so many ways that I could sit here and tally the miracles, beginning with the change I personally have undergone as I have heeded the counsels of the Lord. I am sooo much the better now than I was when I first became a mother. What I can tackle now would have exploded every cell in my body before. And I thank God for that.
One way in which I have recently experienced the Lord’s preparation I do want to talk about.
It came on one of those days when I feel like my tank is running on fumes of fumes. As my husband, my blessed, blessed husband, put the two girls to bed, I said a prayer to Heavenly Father, expressing my exhaustion, especially my mental and spiritual exhaustion.
“I don’t know how I’m going to do this by myself” I said. My husband works out of town frequently, leaving me and the kiddos for 24 hours or more at a time. But he had taken 20 days off of work to stay home with me after the baby came to help me process this transition. And the time for him to go back to work was coming quickly, and I felt like I had yet to figure this whole thing out. Not even close.
And as I sat down to write in my journal and capture some of my thoughts, this gem came into my mind: Establish your needs.
So I began to write down a list of things that I felt that I needed in order to be happy, fulfilled, and full-functioning. And this is what I came up with (order irrelevant):
1. Personal Spending Money
2. Intellectual Stimulus
3. Meaningful Conversations
4. Change in Diet (More healthy and enticing)
5. Clean Home Environment
6. Break from Mental Load of Motherhood/Homemaking
7. Consistent Exercise
8. Purpose to Each Day
9. Time with God
10. Wardrobe I Feel Good in
11. Opportunities to Serve Someone
And as my list came together, this accompanying thought followed: Now how can you meet these needs each week?
So I made some goals. And some plans. And as I have moved forward with this tidbit of wisdom from heaven, I have begun to use this list as my foundation for my weekly planning. Some of my needs only need to be met once a week, while others needs more frequent attention. But I make my goals and plans, and coordinate with Andrew, to make sure that I am taken care of.
People often say that the hardest part of motherhood is making sure you don’t forget about yourself. And there are times when my needs just have to go on the backburner, no matter what my goals or plans are. My son struggles with gas, and so sleeping is sometimes a nightmare. And I’ve had to go days without doing much else than trying to get a belly-aching baby to sleep. But those times pass or the Lord throws me a normal day to catch up on things that have had to go unattended to. But when those breaks come through, I already know what my priorities need to be within my home and within myself in order to be prepared for whatever the next day will bring.
I really feel that the Lord, one step at a time, helps me develop strategies and solutions to the ruffles that come. But as hard as some days can be, the Lord always has fulfilled his promise that He really will “prepare a way” for me to do as He asks.
If anything, I hope my journey, however different from your own journey and complications, may offer somekind of springboard to help or to ideas you too may be in need of. Our God takes care of us, and I’m happy if I can be a step in that process.