Expectations surround us. We expect things of others, of nature, of ourselves. Other expect things of us. Many times expectations are reasonable. Most of the time they are met.
The sun rises. The chair holds our weight. Husband comes home from work. The internet stays connected. Baby falls asleep.
Expectations are a necessary part of life. Imagine what life would be like if we paused each time before sitting down to fully test the chair’s ability to hold our weight. Or constantly tested the ceiling strength to make sure it didn’t cave in on us. Or tried to will our heart to pump blood. We become conditioned to the way the world works, and expect it to continue working the same way.
photo by Gareth Weeks
However, expectations aren’t always met. Sometimes I find myself unconsciously expecting motherhood to be easy. It’s not. I think “homemaker” is the best career ever, but it’s not easy. Babies aren’t born mindful of their mothers’ sleep needs. Toddlers don’t come preprogrammed to share, ask nicely or go potty in the potty chair. Nobody said motherhood was supposed to be easy. Choosing to bring a life into the world means choosing sacrifice. Choosing to sacrifice time, money, personal time and, in a very real sense, our bodies as we raise up our children.
What’s wrong with expecting at least six hours of uninterrupted sleep? Nothing. If you don’t have an infant, sick children or an odd work schedule.
Have you ever noticed how much expectations affect attitudes?
Daisy is an angel baby and sleeps well at night, most of the time. Then there are those nights. If I crawl into bed at 10:00 expecting to roll out of bed in the morning rested and ready to start the day and baby gets up three times and the toddler wakes up an hour early, it’s easy to get upset. To think that somehow I was robbed of sleep I should have had.
If, on the other hand, I go to bed embracing my calling as mother to small children, knowing that this stage of life often calls for a sacrifice of sleep, then getting up with them is much easier. I still might be groggy, but I didn’t expect six solid hours of sleep. Choosing instead to trust in God’s plan for my night.
Life is full of trials, petty and big. Instead of expecting the road to be always easy, expect God to give the grace to handle the road He’s picked.
Linked up at Proverbs 31 Thursday