I cannot decide which is harder. Working ’til midnight or stopping by 5pm.

One of my earliest posts was about honoring my husband’s wish for me to stop by the time he is home in the evening so that I could enjoy my family, my hobbies, and him during the evening hours rather than folding clothes, wiping counters, mopping floors, etc. And I’ve pretty much stuck to that. It’s undoing me, though.

Today I found myself incessantly angry about messes created after I had already vacuumed the living room twice. Well, after the living room had been vacuumed twice – by me once and by a child the second time and then by a child the third time. This indeed is the downside to winding my days down early. I don’t want to wake up to what I see as a mess in the morning and I don’t want to be managing nit=picky spills, scatters, and splatters until bedtime.

Now I have NO PROBLEM directing children to take care of their messes and the messes of their siblings. NONE. But it’s the managing of those clean-ups that wears me down. It’d be SO much easier to just do it myself. And sometimes I do. But truly for the most part I stay on kids until they do it. They must learn to look after themselves. So what if they’re 3 to 11. This is a big family and they’re gonna pull their load. And generally they do.
Which brings me to a new anxiety. A new housekeeper begins tomorrow. Yeah, yeah. What am I whining about. Sounds like a dream come true, huh? Well, it is. But it also creates a new situation that requires further management. I’ll be showing where things go, how I want things done, working with kids with someone else in my house which will create a heightened sense of existence with me and the children. ARGH!  I’ve been through this before. I want this to be better.

Yes, the Proverbs 31 woman did have maidservants. But can I be as gracious and as easy as she is? I am lacking in the whole kind and gentle spirit thing, remember? I have to believe I can do this. And I have to believe that I have learned from my previous experiences with housekeepers. I have to believe I will “rejoice in the time to come” and only “open [my] mouth with wisdom.” (verse 31:26) I have to believe I can.

As I re-read Proverbs 31, I am reminded in verse 27 that the Proverbs 31 woman “watches over the ways of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.” No fear of idleness here, but will I simply be able to relax? Having household help is nothing new. It was once very common even for people of less than the greatest financial means. I can do this. I have to do this. With God nothing is impossible. That’s the verse that has stuck with me forever. Luke 1:37. Just like I learned it in AWANAs. Yeah. I can do this.

It sounds so petty to worry over. And perhaps it is. My husband wants this for me. For us. For our family. He wants to take some of the responsibilities off of me so that I can focus on learning with the children and truly being with him when he is home. I am grateful. I am honored. I will do this. For all of us. Thank you.