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Thursday, August 16, 2012

write new rules.

I had to get away for a second. 
It was a good decision for my family, for our business. 
Feels like the months of June and July, I spent a lot of time writing about, praying about, confessing the need to do it all and the failing when I tried. 
Our vacation in June was a massive wakeup call. 
I knew that I was in for a jolt when I craved vacation simply because I wanted to sleep an entire night without checking my email. 
Who checks their email during the night? 
High powered executives, maybe? 
Nervous family members waiting on a response from a loved one? Sure.
Who should not check their email periodically throughout the night? 
Work at home moms who run internet businesses. 
At that point, I'd say your work-life balance is severely out of whack and you may have incredibly too much on your plate and you've forgotten - this is just the internet.

I went on vacation. I mostly unplugged. 
I found out I was pregnant. I rejoiced. 
The few days before we came back I was terrified of one thing only.  
Could I make a new life? Could I write different rules for myself? 
Could I get the balance right? 

It was all a joke anyhow. 
The new balance was sleeping. Sitting. Vomiting. Sick. Resting. 
In the five months that we lived in Fort Wayne before vacation, I don't think I'd actually ever laid on my sweet gold vintage sofa once. Just to lay. 
Now, it was my new post. I couldn't get off that thing if I tried. 
After breakfast, I'd lay down. Before lunch, lay down. Rest time, lay down. Before dinner, lay down. After dinner, I'd fall asleep on the couch till Nick transplanted me to bed. 

I fell behind on everything. I got frustrated (deserved) emails. My projects were late and my responses were few and I was seriously doing the absolute best I could do. Hilariously, I couldn't even feel bad. I was too tired to feel bad about the people I was letting down. And at home, there was grace. Nick made his own dinner and the kids just laid on top of me on the couch most days. Friends who visited chose to ignore the dirty floors or just laugh with me at them. 

And now that I'm feeling better, it's all clear. 
I will not let the rules of being a mom be dictated to me. I will not adopt the protocol for how to grow and manage an online business. I won't play by your internet rules. I won't write anything unless it is true and imparts His grace to my hearers. I won't be a wife like she is a wife or she is a wife. Don't count on me to put you before my children and absolutely do not count on me to put you before my husband. The internet is my work, it is not my worth, it does not define me. My creativity doesn't define me. My meals don't define me. My chore charts don't define me. 

The gospel. 
The good, fantastic, make you sick to your stomach, make you dance till you're silly, make you cry till your head hurts good news that Jesus Christ died for me and made a way for me. 
That defines me. 
He writes my rules. 
He defines my femininity and my work schedule and my marital roles. 
He gives grace when you can't and He's wiser than all of us combined. 
He is wisdom. He is life. 

A friend has encouraged me to pray for thick skin and a tender heart and I see it now. 
You will find this tender heart who knows nothing but Jesus, who longs to be broken for what He is broken for, who repents and weeps and rejoices and dances, covered in a thick skin. Standing in front of my rickety front porch furiously protecting what is worth protecting.
These years. 
These hearts. 
These affections. 
I will protect it for Him. 
So He can use it. 

I'm writing new rules. 
Join me. 


Nicole said...

LOVE this post!!! Sometimes I realize how much I need to step back from the plugged in work mode. I'm a stay at home momma and I find myself working more now than my 50 hr a week job I left, to be a stay at home mom! Thank you for this Jessi, as you said He writes my rules.

17 Perth said...

Beautifully written!!! I am joining you!! He wants to write our rules---so we should let Him. Thanks for the wake up call.

Alesha said...

<3 Thanks. =)

Aja said...

This is amazing. Good for you for recognizing this and listening to His call and rules. Priorities and what I choose to do with my time has been heavy on my mind lately... Thank you for this reminder!

Carly Ragragola said...

I love this Jessi and so needed it as this past week I've taken on more than I should have in the internet world. I may need to seriously write out some rules.

Autumn said...

You are so right. And I needed this more than anyone knows. I constantly feel like if i don't do this or this im letting someone out there down. Bottom line, who cares. The Lord, my husband, and my family will come first. And thanks to you, there's a little less guilt.

emma said...

Perfect! Thank you!