nonsensical text

Monday, April 02, 2007

thinly sliced...


...bread
There is, often, in the heat of battle, a rush of adrenaline which will keep a soldier on his feet long past when the nourishing effects of his last meal and his last hour in bed trickle away. For the past week, I have fought the battle of motherhood – soldiering forth to tend my ailing flock. As the battle draws toward a close, I find my energy reserves depleted far beyond the drain of the day’s activities.

It seems ironic that I would feel the most alive over the past week in those times when I had the least sleep, the least rest, and the greatest demand on my time. But that is exactly the way of things. In caring for sick children, I always seem able to find one more ounce of readiness to reach out to them in their misery.

But lo, the time comes when they begin to feel better. How quickly my mood changes! The compounded (and unheeded) exhaustion erupts in irritation. Why is it that a simple request for a drink can act as a catalyst to so many different emotions? If my eleven year old asks me for a drink when he is at his worst, I go above and beyond the call of duty (often with an air of compassion and subservience). Add 36 hours to the equation. He is now feeling much more human, and has put forth the energy to engage in several enjoyable activities. Should he then ask me to get him a drink (especially if I was just about to sit down for the first time in awhile), suddenly I am struck with just how much I am taken for granted.

I am drained! I am tired! I am selfish and would like for things to be about ME for five minutes because they have been about everyone else for an entire week. I grab hold of my righteous indignation and wave it about like a banner inside my thoughts. I play the martyr and get the beverage anyway, making sure to drop clues all along the path that indicate just how much I am being put out.

Yes, I have felt the most drained of life, over the past week, immediately following the adrenaline crash. But tell me, does that give me the right to take it out on those around me as if it were somehow their burden to bear? Instead of embracing passive-aggression, wouldn’t it be so much better if I learned to lean on the Lord in precisely those times?

I’ve heard it said that the true measure of a person’s character is the way they act when they are tired. When that realization hits home, I am humbled. But I need to learn to realize and be humbled before allowing myself the gripe time. Then I will truly be alive.

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4 Comments:

  • Oh, I do know that 'thinly sliced' feeling....and that 'gripe' mode when I suddenly leave 'service gladly rendered' and enter into 'martyrdom'.

    More practice, no doubt.

    By Blogger Mel, at 8:57 AM  

  • The answer to your question is no...but it is human. And I understand that feeling so well. SO very well! In fact, I just blogged in a similar vein today.

    You described that perfectly, esp. the bit about a single request for a drink evoking so many emotions.

    By Blogger Julie Pippert, at 11:56 AM  

  • i agree, love that last line - you amaze me, girl.

    By Blogger jouette, at 12:07 AM  

  • mel, it's kind of like saying you should never pray for patience. If you do, you know for sure more practice is headed your way!

    julie: I think I was reading yours as you were posting this (and thinking about how strongly I could relate)! How funny. I really do find myself expecting superhuman powers to come out of my clearly human frame sometimes.

    jouette: that feeling is indeed mutual! No need to say anything else, since you know I love ya (but I snuck it in here again anyway)!

    By Blogger atypical, at 12:35 AM  

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