No One Has It All Together All The TIme





The last couple months have been hard.

While we have had so many happy things to celebrate - like expecting our fourth child, and all the joy that comes with that - it seems that in every other area, things have just come crashing down.  Life has been crazy, and up in the air, and messy, and stressful.  I have just been powering through, but when I stop long enough to think about my emotions, I usually end up having a meltdown.  Even a meltdown toward someone, which I am not proud of.

I wish I could just spill my guts and tell you everything that has been going on, because I love being transparent with you guys - you all always have such wonderful words of encouragement, and I so love that.  But I feel that a couple of the situations, though they involve me, also largely involve the stories of others, and I'm not here to share their stories, just my own.  Another situation, which I could share since it mainly involves me, is still touchy, and not something I feel quite at liberty to share yet.  Let's just say that God is changing and rearranging, and growing me right now.  And like growing pains, sometimes it just hurts.

It is ironic, because a couple months ago I sat at this same computer, and pounded out a little blurb for our local MOPS newsletter about encouraging other moms - and about how sometimes you need to think outside the box.  We all know those moms who always seem to be in a rush, who are ready to tell you the truth when you ask how they are doing, and who you always think of first when someone asks you to reach out to someone who needs encouragement.  You might know that woman who is obviously going through something big and painful, and it is so easy to recognize the need and reach out to those people.  And by all means, you should!  They do need encouragement, and you probably thought of them for a reason.

That said, I think it's important to remember that the truth is, everyone needs encouragement sometimes.  Even those women who always arrive places on time, who seem to juggle multiple projects and kids effortlessly, and who are always dressed as if they are heading out the door to a photo shoot.  Not that I am necessarily in all those categories.  My close friends and family specifically can tell you that sometimes I am a mess, but I know from personal experience, as a person who likes to stay positive, that sometimes people overlook those who seem to have it all together.

But you don't see what happens when that person goes home.  You can't see into their minds in the dark moments.  Trust me, everyone needs encouragement sometimes - and even if you don't catch them at their most dire time, I haven't met a person yet who will reject a word from the heart that is meant to encourage.  And if they do, then the shame should be on them.

Though I think I have hidden everything admirably (or not so admirably) well, and those who do know the whole story have been such a comfort, there have also been moments when I have received encouragement from people who I suspect had no idea I was having a rough time.  I don't even know that they knew they were encouraging me.  But those little gestures do a lot to soothe a heart that is hurting.  Don't underestimate the power of small kindnesses.

So I wanted to share all this right now to say that you should keep your minds and hearts open when the Lord gives you the tiniest little nudge or wondering about someone you know.  I suspect there are many, many people around us who are dealing with surprising and difficult struggles, and no one knows except God.  So when He tries to pass the information on to you with His still, small voice . . . listen.  I also know from personal experience that I have missed chances to encourage others, unknowingly right when they needed it, and I wish I could do it over.
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Elizabeth said...

I think I know what you mean, and I admire your tact. Judging by your last post with the gorgeous invitations, you could definitely seem very put together! Our personalities are so complex, and you never know what is a mask, or what is an emotional trigger point for someone, or who is just barely in survival mode. Not to mention, the things that others might envy in us are sometimes the only thing keeping us sane. Personally, I am probably very different from you...my husband and I are both rather disorganized (if I can speak for him) and our life is fairly slow-paced. We take a long time just eating meals and might not get out the door to do something until late afternoon. It might seem leisurely to some, but sometimes I wish we could be high-paced and more productive. And yet, I don't envy those who can't live with messes. Motherhood can be lonely because we keep these thoughts hidden from other moms and are left with only assumptions about others. And we do all have dark moments.

Lee Ann Sturch said...

Callie,

I have LOVED your last two posts. I actually love most of what you write. I read here, mostly silently. I follow you on IG, mostly silently. (Wow! I kind of sound like a creeper! I am not-promise :) ) I actually won your soda shop book giveaway. :)

Anyway, this post didn't spark my thoughts, but sparked the thought to tell you. You have been on my heart so much lately. Random, I know... Just know that God brings you to the hearts and minds of others, even when you don't know. He knows when we need prayers and others (possibly unknown) to join the spiritual battle.

Praying for you.

Brittany said...

Keep your head up mama. No matter what you are going through God will guide you through it. I'll be praying for you and your family. Thanks for sharing your heart.

sarah e said...

Beautiful words and certainly an important lesson to keep in mind. I work in customer service and while people can really just be big jerks sometimes, I do often try to filter their actions through the perspective that they may have a lot on their plate or be really hurting. It helps to remember that this moment of consideration can be appreciated by everyone. Thoughts are with you during this time!

Natalie @ She Builds Her Home said...

I'd love to just give you a big hug right now!! Times of growth can be SO hard at times, but I know I always come out better for going through them!! That being said, why do they all have to happen at once?! ;)

Kara @ Just1Step said...

Sorry you're hurting and struggling, girl. :( Will be sending up some prayers for you, that the Lord guides you to the solutions you need in your life and also just that the pain and stress will pass! Thanks for being vulnerable and sharing.

Callie Nicole said...

Thanks Elizabeth! It is so hard to tell whether someone is in survival mode or not - I think it's just good to keep in mind, especially when you think you are the only one who is struggling with something, that others are probably struggling with things too sometimes without you knowing it!

Callie Nicole said...

Lee Ann, thank you so much for the encouragement! It means so much to me that you have been thinking about me and praying for me right when I needed it!

Callie Nicole said...

Thank you Brittany, you're encouragement means a lot to me!

Callie Nicole said...

I think that is such a great attitude to have toward someone who might be short or rude - they might just be having an awful day/week, etc! Thanks Sarah!

Callie Nicole said...

I so agree! I think putting on my poker face has made me think about how others are probably often doing the same thing when they are dealing with stressful situations.

Callie Nicole said...

Thank you so much, Natalie! I wish I could have that big hug too! We'll just have to pretend. ;-)

Callie Nicole said...

Thank you Kara! It means a lot to me to know you are praying for me. :-) Things have been a little better the last week or two.

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