As I mentioned in “About Me,” I am dealing with post partum depression. I am struggling to stay away from serotonin altering drugs. Currently I’m taking Deplin, a vitamin that is a precursor to serotonin. It has made a huge difference, but some days it’s not quite enough. Yesterday was one of those days. I couldn’t sleep much on Monday night and I woke up tired on Tuesday. From the very beginning I started saying that this was not going to be a good day. After breakfast, I tried to sound excited as I announced the new color and shape of the week, but my mind was still saying I’m not feeling great. Then, wouldn’t you know my boys decided to go from doing one thing not allowed, to the next thing not allowed, and on to the next thing not allowed, and it just kept going. I desperately wanted nap time to come sooner and I wanted to yell at my kids to obey. By the time the nap time came I was totally spent with thoughts of how other mothers can handle this without blowing their cool, I should be able to that too. How can I even consider myself a good mom with thoughts of yelling at my kids? I’m nowhere near that creative and under control mom that I thought I would be. For the next hour I cried and my mind thought the worst of my mothering skills and what I must be doing to my children mentally and emotionally.
I had walked into my office and there sat my Bible and the handouts from my mentor. We have been working on the topic of renewing your mind. Right on the front page was a scripture that caught my eye. Proverbs 23:7 paraphrased: As a woman thinks in her heart, so is she. I was immediately reminded that Shirley said whatever I think about most during my day, that has been my God. With a pain of guilt, I had to confess that being a mom not living up to her potential and what I think other moms can do was being my god for the day. While I would love to say that my spirit lifted and I was a happy mommy for the rest of the day, that’s not what happened. I spent the next hour crying my eyes out, then pulled myself together to make it through the next wake cycle with my children. I didn’t yell, but man, was that a hard 2 hours. I would catch myself talking in my mind about what I should be like with my kids and what I wished they were like. Each time I had to catch myself and give myself grace because that is exactly what God is doing for me, giving me grace and filling in where I’m not able. Tuesday afternoon we have a playdate at our house. My boys always seem to act better and play longer when other kids are around. It was so true today. My boys were not perfect, they managed to stand on the couch and get in trouble more times than I wanted to count. But, it gave me a break, some friend time and it reminded me as I watched the other kids that they too are disobedient. At first I started feeling sorry for myself that I’m dealing with two disobedient kids instead of one. I quickly had to turn my thinking around. God knew what he was doing when he gave me twins and post partum depression. He could easily give me the mental health and energy to be a super mom that can sail through having twins, but he didn’t. What he did give me though is a double portion of mercy for the day. He gave me friends to talk to, a playdate for a breather and the perfect topic for my mentor to be working with me on. There certainly is a battle going on for my mind. Satan doesn’t have to come up with wacky, really sinful things to throw me off from keeping my eyes on God. All he has to do is remind me of how imperfect of a mom I am. Now that is sneaky and hits too close to my heart. I would not fall for some obvious sin, but the battle for my thoughts is subtle and so crucial to day to day living. I think I will post Proverbs 23:7 on my fridge so I’ll see it every time I go to get milk for the boys. As I think in my heart, so I am, so let me think about God’s mercies instead of my shortcomings.