Wednesday, July 15, 2009

A Balancing Act

My trainer had me try something new. With my feet on the Bosu (essentially a half-ball on a platform) and my arms spread a bit wider than usual, he had me doing push-ups. I asked him what the benefit was for having my feet on the Bosu and learned that it works my balance more. Gary said that eventually he'll turn the Bosu over (So it's on the ball side rather than the platform, and is more wobbly.) and I'll have my hands on balls instead of the floor. That will really challenge my balance.
I kind of groaned when he gave me that news.
And I think he might have laughed.
Honestly, though, for as much as I complain about the torture exercises my trainer puts me through, I am kind of looking forward to this next challenge. I will enjoy saying I conquered it.

At home I have a very different balance exercise, and sometimes it feels a whole lot harder than propping my feet up on the Bosu while my hands are gripping balls.

I am trying so hard to balance being strict and gracious.

We have rules. We have them for good reasons, and my kids need to obey them. And I, as the Mom, am the one on whom the job of enforcing falls. So I ask the kids how long they have been playing on the computer and when their time is up, I tell them to turn it off. They delay and they groan and sometimes they grumble, but I hold them to their limit.
And, oh, do I feel like a meanie. But there are times when rules must be followed.

The kids have jobs. They are a part of this family and therefore need to contribute to the things that get done around here. But sometimes they're outside playing and they're having so much fun. As I listen to the yelling and laughing, and look at the table which needs to be set for dinner, I realize it would be better for me to go ahead and set the table so they can enjoy playing.
And I feel so nice. Yes, the kids have jobs. But there are times when those jobs can be overlooked.

And thus I have a challenge: Learning how to balance 1)holding my kids to the rules we have established as a family, with 2)extending grace and being lenient appropriately. The challenge is increased by the reactions my children give - the complaining on one end of the spectrum and hugs on the other end totally throw off my balance. In one moment I feel like I have parenting figured out and under control. And in another, I get the feeling my kids will never talk to me again.

And while I think I will probably manage balancing push-ups on a Bosu and balls when the time comes, some days I seriously doubt I'll make it through this balancing act I call motherhood.
So, so very thankful for the grace of God. Without Him, I would have no hope!
May you hold tightly to Jesus as you find your balance today.

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Jessica said...

Great post Karen! I feel the same way. The other day I put away the kids' clothes because they were playing so nicely and I didn't want to stop them to do it. Sometimes I stop them but sometimes I don't. May we all find a good, Godly balance here. ;-)

And yikes about that bosu ball! Whew. I think I'll stick to the machines. LOL

Chatty Kelly said...

Sometimes I think my whole life is one big balancing act! But thankfully I have the greatest "personal trainer" ever - Jesus!

luvmy4sons said...

You summed it up nicely...the balancing act of parenting. It is so much easier to gravitate toward the extremes. Whew! As they turn into teens the balancing act grows even more difficult! You keep going girl! You are not alone...other mothers understand and our God walks with us! Amen? Amen!

My ADHD Me said...

Sounds to me like you have it figured out.
Yes, they have a job and must set the table...but YES, I think that if they usually do it without trial and if they are outside playing it is nice to do it for them once in a while.

LisaShaw said...

That was one of our challenges when we were raising little ones and quite truthfully that never changes.

Balance - balance - balance in all areas of our lives with Christ's help is so important.

Blessings dear friend.

Leah said...

Hmmm, wonder if Gary could do anything about this middle aged roll around my waist???? It doesn't seem to be disappearing and I'm sure it has NOTHING to do with being 45!!

I have that same balancing act going on, but mine is with my husband. He is sooooo good to help around the house if I ask him. Sometimes I wonder why I even have to ask but it must be a Y chromosome thing because some of my friends say their husbands don't automatically clue into things that need to be done around the house. I'm blessed that Greg will willingly help when asked.


God's girl said...

Ah Yes! I love this post as I too, am trying to balance similar issues in my home. I think sometimes I just get caught up in the "rules", that I don't make room for a "little" leniency. But God lovingly reminds me that, (as the perfect parent), He not only disciplines and expects certain things from me, but also extends more than enough grace at the times I need it. Thank you for this beautiful post:) (Does your trainer know he is the object lesson of a few of your posts? lol Just tell him thank you:) )

Denise said...

it's like you crawled into my head on that one! listening to the boys playing and deciding to just set the table myself....yup, been there, done that! GREAT post! Need to remember that balance!

happyhome said...

When compared with motherhood, those crazy exercises don't seem quite so difficult do they? :o)