The subtitle of this post is

Or why I need to think differently about May

the full life

I picture life like this steamer. Yummy, tasty, full, and limited.

Sure, you could shove more on it, but it will fall off, get cold, and miss the beauty of what the steamer was meant to do and be.

We’re the same.

We can shove a lot more into our lives. Our days. Our schedules.

Or we can live a richer story in the messy middle. Here’s the thing. We’re each going to have times of the year life is a bit crazier or stressful or hard than other times. Maybe for you, August is the month your baby died and you know you’re going to be in funk for much of the month. And of course you are!

Or there is a day that you’re just not quite yourself. For me, it’s October 2nd.

We each have certain rhythms that ebb and flow outside of the rhythms of the calendar. I have realized I need to start approaching the first two weeks of May differently. Because I’m not a mom and really, other than in churches and restaurants and card aisles, it’s not that big of a holiday. But for me, it is. It’s my busiest blog time of the year.

It’s delightfully insane as I have the privilege of interacting with many new people, answering questions, and juggling opportunities. I get to see the Church at her best as she seeks to serve –and a bit of the “seedy underbelly” of the church as well, alas.

And for the third year in a row it surprised me and I didn’t make any allowances in my schedule. The first year was understandable, the second, maybe … by the third? Who’s not paying attention.

(Um, me.)

So, next year instead of being blindsided for the fourth year in a row, I’m going to make room in the steamer of my life for at least three of buns to be devoted to this annual adventure. Other things will need to be let go of for those two weeks. And you know what, that’s OK. I can’t do it all and I want to be sure I don’t miss out on the these annual opportunities because I pretend I can do it all.

I’m not alone in having annual rhythms different than those around me. I don’t know about you, but I can feel like a bit of a jerk going “you know, Mother’s Day and all…” like it’s about me. But it’s not about me any more than your annual interruption is about you. You are a part of a larger story.

Let’s find ways to invite others into our stories instead of trying to shove more in the steamer. It doesn’t work. I had planned a “deeper” post, but in my ignoring of seasonal life rhythms, this is being penned early in the week because later I’ll be at a four day conference.

Wanting to be fully present there, this is the depth you get: honor your seasonal rhythms. Live within your boundaries so you can savor what life is serving you. Do as I say, not as I’ve done =)

As we learn to honor them, we create space to flourish.

What are your personal rhythms?

Photo credit: Amazing Niece #1

Linking with Laura and Kelli and SheLoves: Flourish

Leave A Comment

  1. Mark Allman May 19, 2014 at 1:44 pm - Reply

    I think everyone likes to have balance in life but life seems always out of balance. I think we have got to realize that those days will come when we don’t have enough time for all we want to do and we have to make choices based on that which means the most and that which should get priority and move with those things. Life is not about balance in the sense that we can do all we want when we want but we get to choose that which we pour our life into. Sometimes on our schedule and sometimes not.

  2. Laura Connell May 19, 2014 at 2:10 pm - Reply

    Great idea – Christmas has always been really hard for me and I would feel sad and depressed but try to pretend I wasn’t. Finally this year I read a devotional in which the author said she earmarked November 15 to January 4 as a time to be extra gentle with herself. A-ha! I realized, it’s not just me. That’s my new plan, too.

  3. Debby May 20, 2014 at 3:08 pm - Reply

    Living near the ocean I get the concept of ebbing and flowing but not so much of seasons in S Florida. Sometimes it’s hard when there are no visible seasons but you’re feeling one all the same. When you feel whatever season is upon you, bending into it like the tide of the ocean always seems best. And yes, easier to say than do. Stopping by from the SheLoves link up and thanks for stopping by my part of the blogosphere.

  4. Dolly@Soulstops May 20, 2014 at 4:09 pm - Reply

    Amy,
    So much great wisdom here…I am always needing to be reminded to not place “too many buns” on my plate…but God is faithful to remind me :)

  5. Theresa May 20, 2014 at 10:41 pm - Reply

    I found your blog due to the reason you wrote this seasons of life post: your posts connected to Mother’s Day, mainly because I was looking for assistance in discussing this issue with my pastor (meeting planned for tomorrow). I liked your posts, but I am crazy, head-over-heels, madly in love with your responses to the comments. You are gracious, even (and especially) to those who are not remotely gracious to you. Thank you for not resorting to snark or a defensive tone. It’s beautiful to see a follower of Christ conduct herself like one. Continued courage to you.

    • Avatar photo
      Amy May 21, 2014 at 11:09 am - Reply

      Theresa, thank YOU for your comment. It’s funny, when I got the first snarky comment two years ago, God just said, “respond in love.” OK, I thought, and did. I felt better about myself and the ways I want to represent and have God live in me. I’m thankful he said that because, as you noted, that wasn’t the only, shall I say, dissenting comment. But God has helped me to remember that their comments actually say more about them and what’s going on in their lives. Did you see the follow up letter I wrote this year? “Beyond the surface of mothering?” I’ll be thinking of you as you talk with your pastor. I hope it will be a time of mutual understanding. Rock on sister!

  6. Kelli Woodford May 21, 2014 at 12:26 pm - Reply

    A lot of truth to that, friend, the idea of rhythms. You have reminded me to listen to my life and get a sense of my own.

    Thank you for this.

    And thanks or linking with Unforced Rhythms.

  7. Anne-Marie Heckt May 26, 2014 at 9:50 am - Reply

    ‘I can’t do it all and I want to be sure I don’t miss out on the these annual opportunities because I pretend I can do it all.’ and ‘Let’s find ways to invite others into our stories instead of trying to shove more in the steamer.’ Amy, thanks for this pragmatic link-up and such a needed word for me – straining to do more than I often can with a scattered creative -type brain. So good to sink in, dig down and be exactly where and when we are – but this is a wise reminder that the nature of that can change from season to season. I’d like to hear more of your story behind this post. Blessings in your busy season!

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