Settling Into Your Season

“There is an appointed time for everything, and a time for every affair under the heavens.” (Ecclesiastes 3:1, New American Bible)

Seasons of life have different demands. Some seasons are fun, and filled with laughter — others are hard and dark. I had some great seasons: a well-loved childhood, romantic and fun teenage years. College was freeing and fun and challenging, and again, romantic. Adjustment to newlywed life brought yet another season, one which required changes in communication and expectations, but where I, again, basically could do what I wanted, when I wanted. I pampered my husband with a clean apartment, delicious meals, and all household needs taken care of. I made sure he had the best possible environment for learning. I worked and made friends through my job. These were all things I chose to do and felt in control while doing them. 

Next came a season of motherhood. It was a season I welcomed. It was a season we prayed for. 

It began with a season of hyperemesis gravidarum — of carrying around my own little trash can just in case I couldn’t make it to a toilet. A season of feeling weak and ugly and fat and ineffective. 

Not such a great start. 

Mothering is hard work y’all. It is a dying-to-self, humility-building, pride-swallowing season. I fought that season. I fought it until I broke. The fight was too much, and I needed help from medication to get through it. 

Fighting looked like disappointment from committing to school events because I am a helper, but having to cancel said commitments because your children are sick. 

Fighting looked like disappointment in needing to take sick days, again, because my children are sick, although I loved my job and wanted to be successful. 

Fighting looked like disappointment in my messy home and feeling inadequate in all things. 

Know who I was constantly disappointed in or upset with during those fighting years? ME! Me. This was all because of my unrealistic expectations I put upon myself. And I knew it. I knew those expectations were ridiculous, but I had never failed myself before. And here I was, feeling like I was failing. 

Recently — like within the last month — I have finally wizened up, or my hormones are finally calming the hell down, and  I find I CAN release those expectations. 

And I have found peace, and remembered my JOY!

I am ignoring the mess: it is ever-present. It is a sign my children are playing, and I refuse to interrupt their play to tidy things up. We’ll just wait until there is no more room to walk about, then do a massive clean-up. 

I changed my organization method: I used to have a picture label for all of the children’s toys affixed to its proper place so they knew where to put their toys. Not very successful. When it was time to tidy up, everyone had anxiety about where they toys went which led to tantrums. If I don’t like looking at the toys, then I need to LET THAT STUFF GO! Now, we have plastic bins that I cannot see into, and all the toys go into the bins. I do not care what toy goes into which bin, just get it out of my sight. 

I let go of the expectation of being the best gift giver. A sincere note or small token of love or gratitude can be someones most-treasured gift. I refuse to push our budget to fit my gifting expectations.

I accepted that some days, self-care is walking to the mailbox to get away from the kids for 30 seconds, running a quick errand on my own, painting my toenails, eating a healthy meal, getting to the gym, or completing at at-home workout.

I give myself  more grace. Funnily enough, I’ll even give my past self some grace. A smoothie is my grab and go easy meal now, but it probably couldn’t have been when I had tiny babies because of the noisy blender. So, past Sarah, you eat that slice of peanut butter toast; you’ll figure this out later. 

There are seasons for working outside the home, being a SAHM, a WAHM, and a season for figuring out what gives you joy.

Even in blogging, which is something that does bring me joy, I have not met deadlines because we were in a season of sickness and my kids’ care had to come first. 

Ladies, I encourage you to really look at your season, buckle down, and settle in. Embracing your hardships and letting go of expectations of what you thought your life would look like will give you freedom and peace!

Sarah Keating
Sarah is a 30-something mom of four children under six and wife to her high-school sweetheart. She returned to Acadiana two years ago following her husband’s completion of medical school and residency in Shreveport. After the move, Sarah switched gears from full-time pediatric speech-language pathologist and working mom to full-time stay-at-home mom to her brood. Her current hobbies include “speech-therapizing” her children, re-reading the Outlander series, catching up on her Netflix queue after the kids go to bed, completing XHIT videos at naptime, and taking her medication every morning. She loves and respects the sacredness of motherhood, but sometimes you just have to let go and laugh it out. Motherhood has been the most humbling, and empowering journey she has experienced.

1 COMMENT

  1. This was a wonderful blog that I can relate too. Sometimes we put too much pressure on ourselves. I have been journaling through my disaappointments and now I am realizing that this is just a season and I will find my way through it. Thanks for posting this!

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