I just finished reading Close to Home by Molly Sabourin. I ordered this book from the library(which I posted about here), they didn't have it but I put in a purchase request and they bought it.
First, I need to say THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU Molly for writing this book. Thank you God for giving Molly the words to put on paper, words I believe so many mothers need to hear. Words of encouragment. Words of comfort, knowing that I am NOT alone in the race. That I am not the only mother with these thoughts racing through my head. Thoughts of doubt and fear. Thank you for bringing to these thoughts an Orthodox understanding, a perspective that I just didn't see and REALLY needed to hear.
This blog post is the only way I can thank you, Molly. By letting you know how incredibly real this book was to me. And by sharing with those that may happen upon my blog...this is a MUST READ for all mothers...Orthodox or otherwise.
Here is one section that really hit home for me. And it feels so good to know I'm not alone!!!
Of the many cracks in my mothering armor, there is one that leaves my children and me particularly vulnerable to harm: a subconscious habit of judging my family in regard to how we mearsure up to others. I am ashamed to admit how many years I wasted trying to be somebody I wasn't, or how many M&M's I consumed because our papers were chronically out of order, the clutter more conniving than my impractical cleaning schedule, or because the laundry had washed with a tube of greasy Chapstick in my pants pocket...again.
I got downright crabby when my idealized self stood just inches out of reach, looking more muscular, organized , and outgoing than this all-too-human flabby-thighted mother pressing her nose against the glass that divided heavily marketed pipe dreams from reality. My neck was chronically sore from craning over fences for a nice long look at where the grass was always greener, the children better behaved, and scrapbooks filled to overflowing with anecdotes and updated photographs. Guess how few people were blessed by my neurotic desire for flawlessness?
Later in the chapter regarding the above...
I could try to be you, all clever and crafty and virtuous, or her with the delicate feminine disposition; but eventually my real, Molly Ann Sabourin self would rip holes all through that disingenuous disguise. It is my first fruits God is asking of me--my talents, my quirky habits and convictions. It would be awefully counterproductive to try ato work out my own salvation with fear and trembling by concentrating on everybody else's.
I know I am impatient. I know I am absent-minded. I know I struggle with being too impulsive and easily distracted. I know I am sefish, but I also know that I am the very best mom for the wonderfully human kids God gave me. If I start each day with a prayer of humility, admitting that on my own I will really mess things up, my mind and heart remain open for help and direction. I set tiny goals, like not yelling through breakfast, or putting aside my "work" to sit and play one game of the children's choice.
I needed that!
One last quote from her chapter Acceptance...this is huge for me....
The quiestion I need to ask myself is not, "What, in addition to the blessings right before me, would make me happier?" It is rather, "What do I need to rid myself of in order not to get sidetracked from my first and foremost goal of achieving salvation?"
Whoa! There is so much more in this book that is just...wow! For me!
I think I'll read it again before it's due! (or buy my own!)
Thank you again, Molly!!
(It's really late so please forgive the typos and if they are really bad please dont' hesitate to let me know.)