Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Walking the Tight Rope

Balance has eluded me most of my life.  I’m an extremist.  Not in the fanatical sense.  But when it comes to making decisions as a wife, a mother or a friend I struggle to maintain the level headed logical determination that inevitably comes if I take a few days to think on it, pray on it and take the emotion out of the equation.  So how does one find balance?
Physical limitations bring another element to finding balance.  Dishes and laundry don’t wash themselves; kids can’t drive themselves to school, sporting or church events, and I meet myself coming and going as the weekend approaches.  I crash into my bed and sleep for 12 hours while the rest of the family fends for themselves.  Knowing that even after a day or two of sleep I will only feel half-rested before the process repeats itself with the next weekend around the corner.
The more repetitious my days are the better my body copes with its physical limitations.  And by repetitious, I mean routine.  My body does not recognize change.  Even positive change has a negative impact on me, so most often I find myself only able to do the things I’m ‘supposed’ rather than the ‘fun’ stuff.  So I write it all down.  And the calendar fills.  About the time I feel like the breath has been knocked out of me is when the Lord lets me know it’s time to say NO.  At least to the things I can say no to. 
Saying no has become my theme song in life.  And after twelve years I’m starting to get used to it.  And when I don’t say no when I should, the Lord says no for me.  Most often by knocking my feet out from under me and forcing me to rest.  So I try to make sure I have energy for the basics.  Church, family and work are a given and there’s not always much left for anything else.  I make a deliberate effort to participate in bunko every month so that I stay connected with my dearest friends of which I may or may not get to connect with at church.  I make a concerted effort to call my Beebe Girls on a weekly basis so that I even if I don’t see them, I stay connected.
I very seldom am able to participate in the extra-curricular activities our church enjoys.  For if I say yes to one thing, I’m saying no to something else.  Not because I’m being anti-social, but because with what energy I have my family must come first.  And although my fellow brothers and sisters may not literally understand my physical limitations, they understand my desire to put my family first and I know they wouldn’t have it any other way.  So I challenge you this week to find some balance by saying no and gaining a little bit of control in a world of chaos.


  1. Your struggles are not foreign to me dear friend. I too struggle with balance and for the past few months I have gone from one extreme to the other. From trying to be continually involved and absorbed in everything, I was neglecting my little family. Now I seem to say no so often that it is hard for me to say yes. I need to swing that pendulum back towards the center, and continue to strive for that balance.

    Thank you for your words. Love you. And I pray you had a wonderful birthday :)

  2. Stephanie, I'm so glad that you pointed out the other extreme. Saying 'no' to everything. That's just as easy to do sometimes. I'm glad you can recognize that in yourself and try to find that balance.

  3. That's one of the things that impresses me so much, Nichole...I've seen you slowly evolve from being a little on the impetuous side, rushing into things only to realize you probably shouldn't have, to slowing it down & thinking & most importantly praying about things AND becoming accepting of the answers that come, even if it's against your instincts. That's when God is truly glorified, when what we do is against our own nature!

  4. Thank you saying that Jessica! I am trying...slowly byt surely :)

  5. I am known as the person who always says yes. Our weekends are filled from sun up to way past sun down. Usually church events, family get togethers, school projects, Kaylee's friends, Girl Scouts...you name it. I have had to say no lately and it felt horrible. But I am learning saying no will help me help my family. I am the mom who always tries to help at school,church and Girl Scouts. I tend to overschedule a lot of times. My friends at work marvel at how I manage to get it all to fit in. I actually work better when I'm busy. If I have down time, I feel like I'm not being useful. But several illnesses (nothing like you!) and my body just telling me no, has forced me to slow down. I do say no now a little more than I used to but still find myself promising my family to many many events. Maybe if I have another kiddo, I'll slow down. Maybe!

    Thank you Nichole for posting your thoughts and feelings on here! I love listening to your lessons. Miss you so much dear friend!

  6. Laura~Thank you for your support!! I appreciate your comments and the insight you've given into your life and your struggles. I hope that you will be able to find some balance and say no as you feel you need to. I am very familiar with listening to my body and it telling me 'no' more than I'd like. It certainly puts things into perspective for me. Thanks again friend! Miss you very much too!