Been Blogging

In this phase, I’ve been blogging here less (clearly), investing my creative energies mostly in the little boy born last November. However, I’ve kept up a little bit of writing — mostly about motherhood, no surprise — over at Covenant, The Living Church’s blog. Catch my latest posts here:

The Sharpening Joy of Motherhood

After Birth

 

Mother Emily

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As I head down the straightaway of my last trimester, those around me expect that anxiety and feelings of being overwhelmed by motherhood will set in. I don’t just mean people around me, but every mommy blog, book, and spammy email mentions this anxiety that must just be eating me up.

I don’t feel it. Continue reading

Lessons on Self-Worth from Facebook

Do you ever stop yourself from doing something good, because you know there’s something better that you could do?  (and then, end up not-doing the better thing and do no-thing instead?)

In The Happiness Project, Gretchen Rubin uses the example of her friends’ birthdays: she’d mean to send them a card, or call them on the phone, but either the day passed and she forgot, or pulling out stationery and finding a stamp, or digging up a phone number just was too high a barrier, and she’d let another birthday–and another chance to connect–pass by.

Her dilemma hit home for me: if I couldn’t think up some clever or especially meaningful thought or wish to share on a friend’s facebook page for his or her birthday, I just said nothing at all.  My mind got used to ignoring the little birthday candle at the top of my newsfeed every day.

Rubin swallowed her pride, gathered all the pertinent birthdays into a program with requisite email addresses, and vowed to send an email to each person every year on their birthday.  Sure, a card or a phone call would have been “better,” but if the barrier to those actions was just high enough to keep her from completing them, an email was definitely better than nothing.

On my birthday earlier this year, I noticed that it wasn’t the clever memories or sayings that delighted me as well-wishes showed up on my newsfeed all day.  The messages that surprised and delighted me most were  from those people with whom I hadn’t had contact over the last year, but who took just long enough to notice that it was my birthday, and to write two or three words on my wall.  Just knowing that they’d thought of me warmed my heart and I started to see what it is that’s meant when we say “it’s the thought that counts,” or “90% of life is showing up.”–I’m often tempted to think that something’s got to be personalized, or super creative, or fantastically complex to be a good gift, or to be a job well done.

In and of ourselves, who we are when we’re just sitting on the couch, our very presence–that’s plenty for most people.

God created us to be fantastic, personalized, creative people just as we are, without energy-sapping window-dressing, complicated choreography, or intense planning.  Just sitting on the couch, doing nothing, “contributing” (in an economic sense) nothing–we’re plenty.