A few days ago, my husband got home from work and I hadn't gotten any schoolwork done. I gave my usual spiel about how "I had to take care of the baby all day and I didn't get any work done." Finally, he said to me something I wish he'd said about 9 weeks ago when my semester started: "You don't have to take care of the baby. You get to take care of the baby." Now, if you know my husband you know that this wasn't some kind of "staying at home is easy" comment, but rather a comment of motivation-- a necessary reminder that I'm immensely blessed to spend this time with our beautiful child, and she is not a chore. It took a few days to sink in. I must have said it at least a few more times.
Last night, when I arrived at class without my midterm essay in my hand and shuffled through a list of excuses in my head about why it wasn't done, it finally clicked. What I'm doing is hard. Raising a child and attending my final year of seminary after two weeks of "maternity leave" is no piece of cake. And, most importantly, there's no reason for me to act like Super Mom. Finally, I told my professor, "It's not done, but it will be." He graciously said, "Not a problem."
A year from now, I hope to be ordained, to be serving a congregation of the United Church of Christ, to be a mom to a 15-month-old, and to be sane.
Therefore, I'm creating this blog as a step towards self-care. I hope you will follow me through my ordination process, through the many "firsts" of my baby's life, and through my journey to learn how to take care of myself-- because one of the things that pastors most often forget is that taking care of oneself is not a selfish act, but rather an act of taking care of God's creation.