So I’ve been MIA for a while. It’s not that I don’t have anything to say. I do. I have thoughts on becoming a transracial family and what race now means to me. I have thoughts about mothering. I have many, many thoughts on adoption. But I’m battling with exhaustion. Things are better than when we first came home, for sure. But I still feel like I’m in the trenches.
I am physically exhausted because Ephrem still struggles a lot with sleep. On a good night, we are up 1-2 times with him. On a not-so-good night, it’s every 45-75 minutes. The not-so-good nights are more frequent than the good nights. I wish I knew how to help him sleep better because we are all soooo sleep deprived (us more than him, I think), but for now, our course of action is just to keep doing what we are doing.
But it’s more than being worn out as a new mom.
Here’s my private confession (that I’m making to anyone who reads this, I guess): more than the physical exhaustion, I am spiritually exhausted. I am empty. I am dry. I am emotionally drained and now unsure how to refill.
Motherhood has been the most beautiful, most meaningful ministry I have ever done. Pouring love and speaking life into that almost 13 month old little boy is an amazing, treasured gift. But this ministry is one that takes every ounce of strength, patience, and endurance I have. I sit back in awe of the mothers who are doing motherhood well, and who are able to still minister to others. I knows some of my struggle relates to insecurity as a new mom. I’m constantly asking myself if I’m doing things “right.” Motherhood is a high-pressure role because it feels like everyone is watching, everyone has an opinion, and the cultural expectations are high. (Thank you, Dr. Freud.) Add to that the pressure of attachment. This in itself is exhausting.
So right now I find myself empty. Honestly, some of this is the challenge of finding the dedicate time I need to spend time in God’s word – quite a feat with a little one who wakes up at 5:30am. And naptime fails because it’s the only chance to get everything else done and/or recover from not sleeping the night before. Still, I’m trying to read a brief devotion to get something, but even with that, I feel like I haven’t heard God’s voice speak to my heart in far too long. I am in the desert place.
Until I hear This voice again, I will “cling to His garment.” Psalm 40 will be my prayer:
I waited patiently for the LORD;
And He inclined to me and heard my cry.
He brought me up out of the pit of destruction, out of the miry clay,
And He set my feet upon a rock making my footsteps firm.
He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God;
Many will see and fear
And will trust in the LORD.
How blessed is the man who has made the LORD his trust,
And has not turned to the proud, nor to those who lapse into falsehood.
Many, O LORD my God, are the wonders which You have done,
And Your thoughts toward us;
There is none to compare with You.
If I would declare and speak of them,
They would be too numerous to count. (Psalm 40:1-5)