When ministering to your kids and wife, it is much more effective to say “ME TOO”, rather than “YOU SHOULD…”. They don’t need our preaching, then need to know we feel and know their hurt. Rather than jump to giving advice, let them know that you care about their circumstances. This allows your kids to know that you also have feelings, have hurts, struggle with fear and pain… This also goes for friends, family, or someone on the streets. Don’t be quick to tell them what they should do to fix their problem. Just offer them a simple “me too, man. Me too. I feel your pain. I have the same thoughts. I made the same mistake last week.” This type of support and love with go a long ways.
Since sharing my struggles about work last week, I have heard two sides of encouragement. Some guys said less work is best. But many guys said its our duty to bust tail, as that is how we provide and serve our family. It’s quite the divide of views.
I don’t think there is a right answer, though guys that work more or less still have the same struggles.
A thought I had was what if we simply HAD LESS instead of struggling to work less. Less house, less car, less cable, less credit, less of everything. The American Dream is killing us all. As if all this stuff will make us happier. If we had much less, then the stress and struggle of work and finances wouldn’t be nearly as strong. We wouldn’t have to bust tail just to feed, since we wouldn’t be sending our paychecks to creditors. I don’t know the answer. But I know that less is more. I strive to work less so I have more family time. But that won’t happen if we keep over-committing our finances to keep up with the Dream.
A lot of great convos the last two weeks about life and truth and honesty. It’s always beneficial to wear your heart on your sleeve a bit. A lot of people secretly struggling with heavy stuff. A lot of doors have opened recently, but the devil has also been extra on his game. So important to keep the inner circle close to help us through it. Don’t go months without sharing your heart with someone. Or everyone.
I am absolutely not one to make excuses. I always take responsibility for my mistakes and failures. I don’t sugar coat anything. I don’t talk a lot, but when I do I have probably been thinking about it for weeks. And what you see is what you get. But for this one time, I choose to kick and scream like my 3 year old and ask for something to change. I am sick and tired of the rat race. I have never been more pissed off with God and so close to all-together rebuking Him. We really do have it better than so many. But when you are exhausted and feel like a failure 99% of the time, these thoughts start becoming whispers.
These lyrics have been in my head as I write this, so I will end with them, though at the moment I am unable and unwilling to do as they say: “I will cast my cares on You”.
There has been a lot and lot and lot of blood sweat and tears put in over the last 3 years. But everything I put my hand to becomes fruitless. I worked really hard this last week, and the week before, and the week before. And a lot of people ask a lot of me, and I try to give my all, and when I ask, it’s often crickets. Clients forget to send checks (even though great systems are in place) and I am forced to choose electricity or diapers. 3 years of that is a heavy burden. In a season where the housing market is booming and people are being blessed with awesome home opportunities (which I am so happy and blessed to see), I maxed out a credit card just to make rent. And it isn’t for lack of trying. All my bride wants is a house we can call our own.
My responsibilities and what is asked of me at home, added on to the fact that I haven’t slept in years, has finally caught up to me. I have been asked to make a good living to provide for my family, but haven’t been given the time to make it happen. As great as my job is, the constant and brutal grind that it has been to earn enough to eat has completely exhausted me. I am physically, emotionally, spiritually, and mentally empty. I am cursing God WAY more than I am praising Him. My temper is short, my frustration level is a constant red. I am too tired to speak. I can’t focus. The bills are stacking high. I have worked to practice patience and trust and leaning on God, only for everything to get way worse. It feels like a great cat and mouse game.
When will just one small little thing go right?
When our babies were born, I made the choice to be around, and to focus first on family, and then on work. I would always make that choice. But when work takes the back seat, and we don’t have food for dinner, my family suffers. So what the eff gives? What mark have I missed? I understand the need for balance, no doubt. But the constant pull and weight of responsibility at home has crushed me. I thought I could do it, but I have so incredibly failed. For the first time I simply just want to go take a nap and forget about all responsibility.
Read more on the next post…
It’s been a while. Usually means everything hit the fan. And it sure did.
3+ years ago, when I became a father, life changed. It was such a thrill to hold my daughter and to become a daddy. It has brought me tremendous joy. I can’t imagine life without kids. Life is full and rich and lively.
But some things have taken a toll. For me, it is many things. For starters, work has tanked. I have a job that requires a ton of creativity, planning, dreaming, inspiration, rest, a refreshed mind, and a good night’s sleep. Our kids have been gifted with the ability to be up all night screaming for years on end. It’s been 3+ years since any of us have had a full, complete night of rest. That WEARS you down quick.
I am tired. So tired I am nodding off writing this.
I feel like I am doing the career and job that God wants for me, and using the gifts he has blessed me with, but why am I unable to consistently put food on the table? Why am I not able to be a great, involved, invested dad AND make a livable wage? I feel like my lane is to be a loving and caring dad and husband, but also to be the near 100% breadwinner in our family. But I constantly get pulled out of that breadwinner lane. I feel like I have been tasked with carrying 62 bowling balls to the summit of Rainier all at once. The burden is heavy, and currently unachievable. I want to be available and help with the kids and go to events help around the house, but that in and of itself has become a near full time job. When do I have time to actually work? Evenings? By the time we get kids to bed, we are so exhausted that we just go to bed. We haven’t sat down and watched a movie or just hung out for 4 months. Our date afternoons last 2 hours because of our high-maintenance kids and we just end up arguing, mostly because we are just tired. And if I say no because I have to work, the guilt is strong.