I had a great Easter Sunday . . . yet, on the other hand I had some hard moments.
Growing up, I had a wonderful childhood. I feel my parents gave me the perfect childhood and family moments (however, they are so realistic and modest, they wouldn’t agree they did everything perfect in the least, but I am writing out of emotion and fond memories). As a mother and wife, I want to be able to give my husband and son the same. I see a lot of families in their perfect outfits and Easter meals; I am quite happy for them. This was not my reality today.
After a wonderful time of serving in the coffee shop with my husband at church, we realized we didn’t have the same idea of how we’d spend our Easter meal. In addition, AJ was out of sorts in the backseat of the car. He’s a wonderful blessing of a loving, intelligent boy, but these past few months have been difficult with transitions and dealing with his sensory issues and overstimulation problems. We resorted to going home and eating leftovers: chips and soup. With AJ’s limitations, he opted for toast with peanut butter and honey. AJ loved his Easter basket, but for various reasons, we kept it simple to where we knew he’d be pleased, but not as extravagant as I would’ve preferred it. As an emotional woman (and I know many of you can relate), I felt I failed as a wife and mom today.
I looked around the house that I’d been tackling and decluttering for a week while being sick and saw the remaining mess. Then I took in the events of the day, or lack thereof, and found myself disgusted enough that I knew it’d be best to take a nap so I could recharge and enjoy going to the evening service with my husband while AJ played in the nursery. I knew I didn’t allow myself to rest often enough, because I usually see how many things needed to be done in the week. Sometimes, resting rather than pushing to do so much is the best thing we can do for ourselves and our family.
I crashed into bed.
Then, the tears started flowing, and the sobs came. I thought back to how my mom always had cute outfits for me on Easter, and how so many other parents did the same. Being in the practical stage we are at, and AJ’s sensory issues, we were just glad to get him dressed, shirt tucked in, and transitioned into the nursery. I cried over how we always had family get-togethers and the security it built into my life and Josh’s life. We’ve been in Colorado Springs for a little over a year, and we don’t have those family members to spend an Easter with in our home or a special restaurant. I cried over how I was just struggling to keep my emotions together for myself, my husband, and my child, through the grueling processes of various day-to-day and week-to-week challenges. I’ve been working so hard at setting a healthy schedule for myself, so in turn, I can set a healthy and secure atmosphere for them. I strive to realize my limits, and what I have to say “no” to in the day (even if it’s to myself), so I can say “yes” to the right things and be at peace and not high-strung. It was tough claiming my victory in those areas because I was too focused on what I was “unable to do”.
Then it happened.
God spoke to my heart. He understood my pain, stress, and frustrations. And even though I’ve known my WHOLE life what Easter is all about, I needed to hear it from Him. His Son, Jesus, did not die and rise again so I could create an amazing, traditional meal, prepare an extravagant gift basket, and come up with a wonderful, creative activity. He died and rose again to meet US in our worst and most dysfunctional of moments, and to rescue us from sin and destruction, so that we could spend eternity with Him! As I was crying, that resounded so deeply in my heart and mind. I knew I wasn’t alone, and that I wasn’t the only one He wanted to truly know that. Especially, with how prevalent social media is, I know there are a lot of you who may have less than joyful feelings about how perfect everything looks for others in your newsfeed, whether you feel loneliness, bitterness, anger, envy, frustration, self-loathing emotions, etc.. None of that matters. AND, sometimes, we really don’t know what those people are truly going through as well. We just don’t.
I understand where you are at, and the stress you may feel. But Easter is not about matching outfits, pretty clothes, looking good at church, fun outside of church, preparing an awesome meal, family peace, (or family at all), or candy . . .
. . . It’s about a carpenter named Jesus, who loves you so much, through all of your pain, misfortunes, dysfunctions, emptiness, mistakes, and “shortcomings”, that He suffered pain, rejections, and betrayal, all the way to dying on the cross for you, so you could have a relationship with Him now, and join Him in Heaven when your time on earth is over.
I randomly desire to sit and relax at a campfire with good company on a grey-skied day and a cool breeze. Don't forget the s'mores!