The Next Step

I feel a bit remiss after my blog post earlier. I find I left out a few very  important pieces.

Grace Grace, God’s Grace

I have heard from some women who have been where I was, and like me they weathered through it.  I know this is a prevalent issue, the women I heard from, like me, made the right choice.  But I am not ignorant enough to think every woman makes that choice.  There are those who deal (or dealt with) sleep deprivation, anger, post-partum depression, or a combination of all three.  Maybe they felt so out of control, they couldn’t think straight. And they choose wrong. If that was you, I want you know there is grace for you too.

Grace, Grace, God’s Grace, Grace that is greater than all our sin.

I did try to reach out when I was in the middle of it. Most often I heard statements like, “Stop talking about that. It’s not true.” or “Stop exaggerating.” or “No, its not as bad as you think.”  Can I be really honest?

It was a bad as I thought.

I remember walking into my local Target and being so angry with everyone else in the store, because I was so exhausted and they got to go home and just go to bed and sleep all night. I remember being angry and incredibly hurt when a friend told me of a friend of her’s who when her (my friend) second child was born would take her firstborn for an afternoon or a day. I didn’t have that. And I didn’t know how to ask for it.

So what can you do when you see a Momma who looks like she is about to drop into a frazzled heap?

  • Listen to her. Pay attention. When she talks about the baby who “never sleeps”, or “cries all the time”. Do not, I repeat DO NOT tell her every new momma is tired, she’s exaggerating. Don’t brush her off. Listen. She might use words like “never”, “always”, or excessively. Listen to her.
  • Call her and tell her, Don’t ask her, TELL her,  you know she’s tired and could use a break so you’re coming to take the children (yes -ren…all of them. Whether she has 1, 2 or 50 you’re taking them all) to the park, mall,  circus, fair, and out for ice cream.
  • Pray fervently for her.
  • Cook her a meal, or organize other women to bring in a meal once a week or so.
  • Brainstorm with others what you can do.
  • Do not ask her what she needs you, or wants you to do for her. She might not have any idea, she might not know where to start, she might be too afraid to ask.  She might think she’s weak if she says anything.
  • Do NOT expect her to come to you.  She might not know how, or who to go to.

Now, if you’re in a similar situation, what can you do?

  • Admit it to yourself.
  • Pray fervently.
  • TELL SOMEONE. Even if it is just your husband, or BFF. Tell them.  It will be the hardest thing you’ve ever done. But do it.
  • Don’t be a Lone Ranger Momma.
  • Cut yourself some slack.
  • Ask for help. Make a list of things that need done and when people ask (because not everyone will read this 😉 ) tell them one thing on the list.  Even if what you really need is a 4 hour block of time so you can sleep uninterrupted, tell them, “I need a 4 hour block of time without any children or interruptions.”

Women, Mommas, we weren’t made to do this alone. Yes we have men. Yes they should support us. But we need each other. We can’t be judging each other, and we can’t be holding back the tough parts of our lives in fear. God calls us to live free, to walk in love. If I’m too afraid of what I suppose your reaction will be, I can’t love you like I should. I can’t walk beside you, learn from you and teach you. I can’t do life with you.

Really that just causes more issues. And really, ladies, don’t we have enough already? I know I do.