Finding inspiration in a pile of laundry.
I often find myself hesitating to respond when people ask "what do you do?"
I do a lot of things - the most important of which is taking care of 4 little people who have stolen my heart. As far back as I can remember, I wanted to be a stay-at-home mom. As a child, pushing my twin doll stroller up and down the hallway... a college girl meeting my future husband...when choosing my career - one I thought would work best with the schedules of kiddos one day....and through the throws of infertility - waking up every day with the objective of my day being to care for my children was my dream. And even now that the reality is - let's just say VERY real - it still is my heart's greatest desire.
I didn't set out to have a job outside of being a mama, but through the journey of growing our little business I have found myself attempting to balance being a mom and having an active role in Love Well. Since Love Well was created as a family business, our goal has always been to weave it together with our family so that it adds to our family legacy rather than taking away from it. There are seasons where we accomplish that and seasons where we struggle, but we always come back to the heart of why we're doing this: family. And as the mama of this little (can I still say that?) family of ours, I take creating our family legacy quite seriously. In that, one of my most prevalent struggles is staying inspired in the midst of the chaos. When it's 10am and your cleaning up a baby bottom for the eighteenth time (are anyone else's kids freakishly regular??). Or you find yourself in the middle of a cluttered playroom with 4 kids climbing on you, three fourths of whom are still wearing their soggy diapers and disheveled hair from the night before. You feel a million miles away from the inspiring photos you'd inevitably find if you were chilling on the porch swing, coffee (soy latte please) in hand, surfing Instagram. How can you carry that inspired high with you through the less than glamorous moments of the day?
Personally, I have found that it all lies in movement and action. I can easily let myself slip into the pit of despair. Overwhelmed, tired, overthinking every single little thing, I often find myself wanting to stop moving. To just retreat and try to survive the hours until nap time. Buried in clutter and noise, it can be hard to stay energized and inspired. But I find that just starting by accomplishing even one intentional thing - start a load of laundry, build a train track, pull out a piece of paper and crayons and just go to town. And repeat. It doesn't have to be anything epic, earth-shattering or life-changing; the tiniest things can change the trajectory and lift you out of the pit.
The other day I found myself sinking. Linc had woken up sick that morning, I wasn't feeling well, and the 5am wake-up call was becoming very evident by my constant yawns. I knew it was that moment - the pivotal moment where I could either take action and begin the ascent to a better day or give into the (momentarily) easier option of sitting...so I sat the girls in their high chairs with a snack and let the twins run wild while I raced down to the basement, grabbed the laundry detergent and the giant pile of swimsuits from last week's lake trip and raced back up to the kitchen sink. The twins shouting faded a bit as the water reached that perfectly warm temperature, I let a capful of detergent create bubbles as it slowly filled to the top, and I began kneading those suits like my sanity depended on it. The sunlight came through the window as I looked past through at the neighbor's porch just outside our window. And I felt the inspiration begin to wrap around me like a cozy blanket. It was by far not the best time for doing laundry - I usually wait until at last half the littles are snoozing before even attempting to be productive, but just accomplishing that one small thing gave me the boost I very much needed.
We often (myself especially) think that inspiration is only found around us. A great book, a moving blog post, an online article - they all have the potential to be great sources of inspiration. But I find that real success in staying inspired is when I can create that inspiration for myself. And it doesn't hurt to make a dent in that laundry pile in the process.
How do you stay inspired and energized when in the thick of things at home?