The Shame of Fatigue

by Jasmine on March 7, 2011 in Uncategorized

*This giveaway is now closed*

My mom had a sinus infection and I had finally convinced her to go to bed and leave the housework to me, my dad was at work, and my five youngest siblings -all six and under -seemed to be bent on trying my patience. I had a list of things I wanted to do as long as my arm -I had two tests to study for, lesson plans to write up, papers to grade, a novel to edit. I promised myself I’d get some work done once they settled down for nap, but, by the time they did, my mind felt like it was made of mush.

And I was almost guilty for being tired.

I mean, I’m living the life I’ve chosen: I love my little brothers and sister -their smiles brighten up my day. I love the responsibility of cooking, cleaning, and laundry -no, I’m not Snow White, but I like the feeling of a well-ordered home. I love being an English tutor, and I love getting my English B.A. via distance learning.

I love being a home-girl.

But because the way I’ve ordered my life is counter-intuitive to most Americans, those days when I’m tired, overwhelmed, or even a tad bit frustrated seem almost to condemn me.

Why is that so?

Why, if I was pulling a full course load at Columbia while simultaneously interning for a renowned publishing house would it be all right for me to come home at night bushed and proud of it… but when my brothers test my patience, it’s seen as proof that I should have been doing something else with my life?

Why, if I were a renowned fiction-writer headed to a book signing while squawking to my publicist on my cellphone and trying to hear my latest interview on the radio would I feel a bit hectic… but when I’m a little frazzled with the multi-tasking with household chores do I feel the need to hide it under a fake smile?

Why do we feel that it’s okay to be tired only if we’re dressed in a power suit?

I don’t anymore, actually. When I get tired, when I get discouraged, when I get overwhelmed… I admit it. I try not to wallow in a pity puddle, but I also try not to be a Stepford Wife in training. I go to the foot of the cross and I heave a sigh of relief:

And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. ~Galatians 6:9

As for you, brothers, do not grow weary in doing good. ~2 Thessalonians 3:13

Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain. ~1 Corinthians 15:58

When we’re following the paths that the Lord has set before us… we’ll get tired. We’ll get frustrated. We’ll grow weary. If it were not so, Paul would not have warned us at least three times in the Scriptures to remember that our labor is not in vain –

There would be no need to be warned to remember if we weren’t so prone to forget.

All women grow weary -in every sphere of society, whether we spend our days shaking hands with diplomats or scrubbing floors, whether we get to talk to famous TV show hosts or try to decipher the slurs of a toddler… the fact that we grow weary while following the Lord’s will for our lives at home is not indicative of the fact that we’ve made the wrong choice, or are not living our dreams… it’s indicative of the fact that we’re human, and need to walk whatever paths that lie before us in Christ’s strength, and not our own:

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong. ~2 Corinthians 12:9-10

Give-away


Almost a year ago, I began the journey of writing my first book, Joyfully at Home with the understanding that stay-at-home daughters do get weary. One of my aims was not to tell them to swallow back their need for encouragement, but to remind them that their labors were not in vain, and to rediscover the joy in the choice of a homeward calling.

As I have said before, I truly hope it will be a blessing an encouragement for those who read it. I am glad the Lord gave me the grace to write it, and hope I accomplished my goal in penning it: to present gospel-centric encouragement for daughters.

I am very honored to be able to give away a free copy of Joyfully at Home here at Raising Homemakers.

To Enter: (Please leave a separate comment for each thing you do.)

– Comment on this post . . . and (optional) answer the question:

“When it comes to serving at home, what are the areas where you need the most encouragement?”

– Facebook, Comment, Tweet, Email, Post the link to this giveaway.

By Jasmine, All She Has to Say

Jasmine

Jasmine is the oldest of Voddie and Bridget Baucham’s six children. She is a homeschool graduate who enjoys studying and writing about areas as varied as theology, philosophy, political science, art, film and culture. She is also an aspiring author who currently lives at home where she continues to assist her father in his research, is completing a degree in English literature, writing a book based on her blog, Joyfully at Home, and is blessed to assist her mother with the care of her younger siblings.

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{ 50 comments }

Wendy March 7, 2011

I need the most encouragement when it comes to my children, ages 10 and 4. I wholeheartedly want to “get it right” when it comes to raising them in a way pleasing to God, and I sometimes feel that I am failing horribly. I think a little encouragement goes a long way, and I could definietly use some. In today’s society it is hardly encouraged to try to be what God wants me to, but I am definitely trying.

Marissa March 7, 2011

TWEETED

Marissa March 7, 2011

Thank you for this post. Unfortunately, I need encouragement to be “in the moment” with my kiddos–regardless of the housework remaining to be done!

kelly March 7, 2011

I would love to win this for my daughter (and I would love to read it as well!) To answer your question: It used to be for me that just sometimes the daily grind was challenging and keeping order; but I have realized that those daily things are an opportunity for me to serve Jesus through my family. It isn’t that I don’t still grow weary or ever get frustrated, but it is so much less when I view it from that perspective.

Kate M March 7, 2011

The most encouragement I need is in doing dishes. With 10 of us at home and no dishwasher, dishes seem to be a never-ending chore, even when divided among all of us.

Jes March 7, 2011

I hear ya! Negotiating whether withal boss or a six year old all day is exhausting! But at the end of the day I get to snuggle the 6 year old. So wager on negotiating with him instead. 😉

Lisa H. March 7, 2011

Thank you for your post. Being a daughter at home is much like being a mother at home, both requiring mountains of strength and wisdom, which can only come from sighing at the feet of our Lord and resting in Him. It is the noblest of work, the most demanding job, and the highest calling for any woman, should she be gifted with this vocation. Thank you for the giveaway.

Tara H. March 7, 2011

Great article! In this season of busy motherhood, this is a good reminder to turn to the Lord. Would love to win the book for my daughter.

tami March 7, 2011

to be able to slow down and take some time for myself…..it is o.k. not be busily behind 24/7…(?) and mostly because i want to show our 8 and 9 yo it is necesary to have some ‘down time’ .to be able to just be still and that He is God time. just haven’t figured out how yet-but i still have time to learn and pass it along ! thank you for the chance of the book-i have ‘she shall be called woman ‘ by victoria botkin. yes, i mean no, i haven’t taken the time to listen to it all……the time thing again…….

Shelly March 7, 2011

Thank you for this post, it is so true! I am a stay at home and also homeschool. I know without a doubt this is God’s calling for me. But on those days of relentless frustration, the days the dishes don’t get done, or dinner is not ready and we have to get take out, I want to crawl in bed and hide under the covers. Why am I such a failure at that which I feel so strongly God has called me to do? I worked in the corporate world for many years before becoming a stay at home mom and I was organized and polished and well respected, then I stay at home, and my life seems a mess. I learned to hide it, when I was frustrated, tired, overwhelmed because everyone’s response was you stay at home all day, how can you be tired? How can you not get everything done? You have got it made, you have the life! Really? Trust my life is not tv and bon-bons!

Your post was a great reminder of the fact that I constantly try to do it on my own strength, set my own priorities. A reminder that each and every day I need to go before my God and let Him fill me with His strength and set my priorities. And that as long as I am walking in His will, all I need is show up and He will fill everything I need. I am made whole in Him! Thank you for that reminder!

Suzanne March 7, 2011

Thanks for sharing your thoughts on weariness. I have 3 daughters myself and would be interested to read this book. My goal is for our daughters to follow God’s leading in their lives, not ours. Thanks for the opportunity to win Joyfully at Home.

Kristin March 7, 2011

Thanks so much for the giveaway!

I think I need encouragement in the area of managing time. I need to learn to prioritize, because I often waste time and then complain about how much I have to do. 🙂

~Kristin

Dianne March 7, 2011

Bravo! Well said! Thanks for the encouragement. This applies to many other aspects of any Christian’s life.

Sarah March 7, 2011

Thanks For the Opportunity!

I always feel like I need to get everything accomplished….dishes, bills, laundry, groceries, cooking cleaning, sewing, taking care of the kiddo’s and truly spending time with them and showing them they matter… heaven knows you can’t do everything all at once or even as much as you’d like but sometimes it’s a bit overwhelming {;o)

Sharon @ Hiking Toward Home March 7, 2011

Thank you for putting my weariness into perspective.
I am exhausted. I can’t keep up with it all. I’ve been married for 18 years this June and this is the first year I have had to actually keep house for the 6 of us (and we homeschool) by myself. Life just has not allowed it. I was never trained to do it. It is overwhelming to me. I want to raise my daughter as a homemaker too but -where to start when you have to start with training your own self, and you feel like you are making ZERO progress.
Not only that but we are currently in a church that is very complacent and apathetic. I am the only one here in our church (literally) that has the desire for my daughter to grow up to be a homemaker. I am looked down on for this stand. So it is good to read encouragement like this. Thank you.

Jen Kindle March 7, 2011

I cannot at this season in my life, be the stay at home mom i feel called to be; but I grow weary trying to raise and home school (with my husband) my 4 children to honor God and keep up my home and work standards. Only recently have I begun to return to the Cross before my tiredness and frustration reach the boiling point. I am trying to teach my daughters to turn to the Cross first in their lives and to expect the weariness and fatigue- to know and accept it as part of the territory.

Shelley C March 7, 2011

I’m beyond this stage now; I had six kids and loved being at home with them. At that time, I needed encouragement to know which battles to fight and which to let go. I see my DILs needing encouragement now and I’d like to know how to be a better grandparent when miles are between us. I liked your comment about de-emphasizing the ‘needing’ encouragement to focusing on the fact that this is a labor of love and it is for Christ sake we do it. I think one of my DILs is discouraged because her focus is on what people can do for her to encourage her rather than this being the Lord’s will and it is not in vain…sometimes our focus is the crux of the matter.

Lea Ann @WhateverStateIam March 7, 2011

Such timely words. I am on vacation with my family right now, praying God will refresh and strengthen my weary body for another year of serving them. Moms get tired; thanks for the reminder that my daughter gets tired, too.

Jaime Lynn Braden March 7, 2011

Thanks so much for this giveaway. I need the most encouragement at home in relation to my appearance. Sometimes even if my hair is done, makeup on, dressed nicely, I still don’t feel attractive because I am sleep deprived and have been cleaning or changing diapers all day. LOL

Jaime Lynn Braden March 7, 2011

I shared this giveaway on Facebook!

Jaime Lynn Braden March 7, 2011

I tweeted this giveaway!

Becky March 7, 2011

Great thoughts. I have a 4 yr old and 5 yr old. The past few years, I have been more tired than I could have ever imagined. I feel strongly that it is important to be at home and that the labor is not in vain, but I do feel at times that if I am tired or I need a break that I am being selfish because it’s my family and home that is my work. It would somehow feel good, right, and necessary to take a break from work for your family, but any time you want to take a break and rest from your family it feels horrible. I guess when you put it in terms of needing to go to the cross and gain refreshment from Christ, it sounds better 🙂 Just needed a new perspective. Thanks.

Amber March 7, 2011

I married God’s appointed mate for me, my best friend, at the age of 18 and we have 3 children- ages 7, 4, and 1- and I am pregnant with our 4th. We live in an old, small house, we homeschool, we are always watching what we spend, and my husband works hard outside the home all day. The Lord has certainly blessed me with all that I have, and I am constantly reminded of that, however most of the time its all just plain hard to navigate. I am going against the tide by bearing more than the average amount of kids (we’re also in the adoption process), so there’s certainly not a lot of encouragement and tolerance out in the world. According to society, I should have 2 kids, a fulltime job, nice car, new house, send my children to public/private school, and spend my time in traffic every morning, chugging coffee, and bearing the typical daily grind. But that is not the life God has called of me. Despite what I feel on a lot of days (“What am I doing?”, “How will I ever get everything done?”, “Everyone thinks we’re crazy”, etc), I keep going, keep building my family, keep pressing on toward the goal. I choose to trust God, even on days when I don’t fully trust myself to do the best job I can do. Despite my constant mistakes and despite what the world deems “acceptable and normal”, in the end, I know its impossible for me to look back and think, “Man, I wish I wouldn’t have had all of those beautiful children and raised them the best way I knew how”.

Becky March 7, 2011

The area where I could use the most encouragement is parenting. I have always been somewhat organized and efficient and homemaking is something that I have always enjoyed and felt comfortable with even before I got married. Raising godly children on the other hand is very intimidating. These are the lives of two of the most precious gifts ever. Everyone has an idea and opinion and in the beginning taking in all that informations was completely overwhelming. I felt like just going to bed and not dealing with it. Now I just pray A LOT and pray for them A LOT. It is hard to find balance to give them all that they need and feel good about doing all of the other things on my list. I know that my husband and children need to come first, I just have to moment by moment evaluate my priorities and take it to the Lord.

Lisa M. March 7, 2011

I need the most encouragement in doing laundry (my least favorite area).

Alisha March 7, 2011

That was an encouraging article. Thank you. I cannot think of one thing I need encouraging more that others right now. Depending on the day, I may need help in being respectful to my husband, being organized, and just plane help to know I am doing right by my children and that they will be equipped and ready for life.

Paula March 7, 2011

Thank you for this timely post!!! I am feeling weary this week and needed encouragement from the Word.

Kendra R March 7, 2011

Sometimes my younger siblings can be really exhausting, especially one of them.

Shari March 7, 2011

Thank you for the giveaway! I most need to be encouraged to start the day with the Lord, instead of getting up and checking my messages on the computer until the toddler wakes up and I run out of time! (the truth hurts!)

Erin March 7, 2011

Balance. I need to find balance. And putting my husband first BEFORE the kids. The kids are more demanding. The housework is more demanding. But finding balance with the kids, the house, my husband, outside responsiblities….Balance is what I need.

Michelle Devine March 7, 2011

I need encouragement in the everyday routine. We had 2 children (teenagers 16 & 18)
when the Lord spoke to us about more children. We have been blessed with 3 more and 1 due in August. All within 4 years.

Tiffani March 7, 2011

I would love to be blessed with this book… both to read and to pass down to my daughters. Having daughters that range in age from 4 to 22, I find that different stages require different encouragement. And, I find that I need the most encouragement when our family is facing intense changes and upheaval. Times like the layoff, house sale, living with family and waiting to move into our new house that we are going through right now. Also, when I went through significant health issues that started three years ago and am still struggling with. Praise the Lord that He is more than enough… especially in the midst of my failures and struggles.

Cha Cha March 7, 2011

Love this post, your heart is such a blessing to see. I hope my girls can learn from you. Thank you for sharing,

Cha Cha

RaShell S. March 7, 2011

Keeping my eyes on Jesus and not on the tasks that can seem mundane.

Rhonda March 7, 2011

Wow, that’s a good question. It seems it’s different at times. Like if schooling has been going rough than I need most of my encouragement there. But overall, it’s encouragement in the topic of this post. Fatigue. I battle fibromyalgia. I start each day with my tank 1/2 empty. It can be overwhelming and discouraging to say the least. The verses mentioned above, truth I cling to. I remind myself to do the next thing. Thank for the encouragement today!

Rhonda March 7, 2011

shared with fb!

Rhonda March 7, 2011

tweeted!

RaShell S. March 7, 2011

I shared this on Facebook.

Elisabeth March 7, 2011

I would love to win a copy of this book; not so much for myself as I am a wife and mother now, but to pass on to my sisters and my daughter in a few years.

Thank you so much for doing this give away!

Lizette March 7, 2011

Very good post and very encouraging for me today. I am convinced that being a mother and working from home is much more exhausting than having a “real” job. I could use more encouragement in being the kind of mother I should be and raising well-rounded individuals. I am so afraid that due to the fact that I also HAVE to work, although it is also from home, I am neglecting the kids when I do so. I know it is not the case, but I can’t help thinking that and feeling guilty.

Bonnie March 7, 2011

Hi. What a great post, I totally needed that reminder. I get most discouraged when I “hear” the words of those who oppose what I do. Im homeschooling my 3 kids. 16, 14, 10 and I am a single mom. God has blessed me with His grace to allow me to live out this life. My kids father lives clear across the U.S. and offers little support (emotionally) towards them. I have odd jobs that bring in money, faithfully raise my kids, have never left them, and yet people continue to see me and I quote… “A sponge” So in reading your article, it really refreshed me. If I was working 9-5, my kids were left alone, in public school, then I have a “right” to be tired? Then I’m “working” hard in their eyes??? Its very frustrating. My prayer for my daughter, 16yr old, is that she would see the beauty, the blessing, the calling of remaining and working at home. I know God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise. Being human, being one woman with 3 kind-of-like me’s gets intense at times. God is always faithul and never late!!

Corinne March 7, 2011

The area that I need the most encouragement- and there are many- is having it be ok to take time for myself. A close second is feeling that no one notice all of those tiny details that have to be attended to.

Joy for me is sometimes hard to find – I just finished reading Love Another Child by Chris and Wendy Jeub – they finally cleared it up for me when they said that if you are going about your work with just duty and not love, you will not have joy. So, in looking for joy, I’m trying to focus on love. It’s quite a process….

SuzB March 7, 2011

Excellent post! The feeling of blessing we receive from working for our families should not be diminished by guilt for being tired after doing it. Bless you for writing this … I hope you got a good solid nap afterwards!

Where I need the most encouragement: Better Homes and Even Better Homes comparison. “Better” referring to perfect cleanliness, camera-ready at an instant. That’s just not my reality and I get discouraged that I’m not “willing” to work that hard to get that affect. But life isn’t *lived* in a museum, it’s *preserved* in a museum. I’m not into canning my kids, I want to see them livin’ on the Vine.

Leslie M.P. March 7, 2011

I always feel like I am pushing, pushing to get things done. I would like to relax a bit more and not feel so harried.

Cindy March 7, 2011

Would love to receive your book. Enjoyed your blog while you were writing it.

ClassiclyAmber March 7, 2011

Great post! I am also very interested to read your book. =-)

Sometimes, I just need encouragement to keep on going. I think that is something that we women who are called to live similar lifestyles can relate to one another best – offer advice and help – and definitely the encouragement!

Lauren March 7, 2011

I need the most encouragement for just being here, in the home. I am a writer, a do-er, a creative being. I also love my children and feel called to stay home with them. I yearn to pave my own way, though. I feel torn, and when I get those little nuggets of encouragement (from my children, my husband, society, whoever) I feel, at least for that moment, I’m making the right choice to put myself on hold.

Wade Balsdon March 7, 2011

As a work at home dad who helps with the kids and cleaning the house, I get tired of repeating myself to the kids to do chores than need to be done every day. The constant repetition drives me nuts. Therein lies my challenge, to effectively communicate my wishes to my children.

Colleen March 7, 2011

Thank you for this opportunity!
I want to thank you for standing in the gap when it comes to young role models for our teen girls! You are a jewel. I have a daughter who is interested staying with us through the years until marriage and I am excited to read this with her to see where it leads.
Thank you again for allowing God to use you in this way.
Hugs,
Colleen

Wanda O March 7, 2011

I so needed this post and will reread it often. I, too, have a larger family (6 kiddos, 12, 10, 8, 3, 2, 7mos) and stay at home and homeschool. The area that I needed encouraging was exactly what you wrote about: I DID attend Columbia, I DID wear the power suit, I DID live in the big city, and now that I am at home with my children (4 dds, 2 dss), I feel so much like a failure because I “can’t” keep up with just the simple things at home sometimes (like getting dinner ready and laundry folded, LOL). I so would love to win this book to read with my eldest daughter, age 12, who is the most dear and valuable daughter a woman could have. I would love to honor her with the knowledge that there is an older daughter who also gives her life away to Christ every day for her parents and younger siblings and that it is not a waste of her life (as so often I feel mine is).

Thank you again so much for speaking God’s truth into my life today. May the Lord richly bless you.

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