being still……

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I used to make fun of people who would use “work” as an escape to keep from having to deal with thoughts or trouble. Now I understand. I didn’t used to “drug” myself with work as an escape from dealing with an issue. After all, I was the Queen of “putting it all out there on the table”. In the last few years, however, I’ve discovered that work can be a wonderful distraction and I’ve retreated inward with stuff that gets to me. Doing too much takes its toll after a while.My body is screaming for a break and I need to switch gears and reevaluate some stuff in my life. The funny thing is that with our large family that I’m taking care of, working hard (and a lot) is a daily reality for me.Sometimes, I just plain have little choice when it comes to burning the midnight oil. I just have to catch up. Its when I overdo what has been done and extend myself beyond a reasonable amount of backbreaking, that I realize I must be escaping something I just don’t want to deal with.

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I stopped myself from drowning my troubles in that “work” today and sat out in the yard on a picnic blanket under a shade tree with my four youngest children. To be quite honest, the tiredness has chased me down and devoured me this week. So, all I felt like doing was next to nothing. On that never-been-used lovely striped picnic blanket,  I leaned back while the baby played with toy cars and we watched as the others took turns (sometimes not so nicely) on the tree swing. My 6 year old daughter giggled that bubbly giggle of hers while she swung higher and higher, the sun highlighting her long blonde hair in a halo that made her look angelic. My four year old son, dug a hole with his toy bulldozer and gathered leaves. My two year old ran freely around the tree with a pail of grass clippings and took turns on the  swing also. I relaxed and let the  breeze wash away all the troubles that today brought and I just practiced “being still”. I paid no attention to the time and eventually found it becoming far easier to smile and mean it. That spot in our yard is now my favorite place here at home to take my children. They deserve a relaxed mommy. I know that if I don’t put the brakes on driving myself super-exhausted then there’s a pretty good chance that this mommy will end up being of no use to anyone or at the very least a grouchy frowning mommy.

One thing I’ve done to drag myself out of the “busy busy busy” spells, is to reignite my passion for photography. I got my camera out this week and decided to take some flower pictures around the yard only to capture some gorgeous butterfly shots instead. God knew exactly what I needed that day. I love butterflies, always have. To me they are a symbol of change, hope, beauty, peace, and freedom.

 

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I’ve avoided the temptation of making a long “to do” list for tomorrow even though I know there is much I need to do (as usual).If tomorrow is anything like today weather wise, then there will be picnic blanket time under the tree again with my babies. I will, however, be canning tomorrow which is good old fashioned “work”, but I love to can the goodies we grow from our garden. There’s some sort of giddy satisfaction seeing all those beautiful glass jars filled with salsa, relish or vegetables. The irony of my love of canning is that as a child, I’d watch my grandmother and mother in their canning frenzies with the kitchen steamy hot and sticky stuff dripping off everything  and everyone, and I’d swear that when I grew up I would NEVER  be so ridiculous as to put myself through that kind of mess. Ah, gotta love irony. So what, I love canning. And I love butterflies, picnics and “being still” and knowing that God is never too busy and He is always in control.

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About Lisa Tompkins

child of God, writer, reader, daughter,sister, wife, mom of many, home-school teacher,pianist,singer, photographer, lover of life and really good coffee, and mixed media artist in the making
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