So September was an especially difficult month for me. After returning home to Doha from an amazing 8 weeks in the states, I started working A LOT of hours. I work for the children's ministry at our church and essentially split the job with another woman so that it balances out to be about 15-20 hours per week for each of us. Angela and I worked really well together and it was a joy to serve the Lord alongside of her. Unfortunately, like so many of us here in Doha, Angela's husband's job transferred him out of the country. So I had to pick up all of her responsibilities until we could hire and train a replacement. I quickly learned that I had drastically underestimated Angela's AWESOMENESS!!! I don't know how she handled all that she did AND made it look easy and effortless!!!
During those weeks, I realized just how hard it is to be a full time working mother. The hardest part for me was the (self inflicted) guilt I piled upon myself. All the little things that I used to do that I no longer had the time to do ... and feeling terribly guilty about it! I had to learn to let things go. It was (and continues to be) a hard lesson for me. Some things were easy to cut out of my schedule ... time spent blogging, reading, on Facebook, etc. Other things were harder to let go of ... working out, preparing nutritious home cooked meals, spending time with friends. And some things I simply refused to cut out ... bedtime routines with the boys, volunteering in their classes at school, yoga :-). It was a hard season in my life, but I've learned a lot about what is most important to me and to our family.
There were many difficult days that I would rather just forget, but I want to be real. So often we put on this façade that everything is fantastic, even when it isn't. Life can be hard. We all have our high moments and our low moments. September was a difficult and stressful month for me and our family, but I have SO MUCH to be grateful for! Ken was his usual supportive self and never got upset when laundry piled up and food supplies dwindled. I don't think I went to the grocery store one time in 3 weeks!!! Praise God for the convenient store in our compound or I don't know what we would have done!!! I'm especially thankful for my friends that quite literally gave me their shoulder to cry on during my toughest days. And I mustn't forget that we are all healthy and the weather in Doha is occasionally dipping below the 100 degrees mark. :-)
And on the bright side, we have hired a replacement for Angela ... and Katie is AMAZING!!! I'm not sure if I will ever be able to keep up with her constant stream of ideas and endless energy, but I CAN'T WAIT to see what God has in store for our children's ministry under her leadership!!
This week was EID Al Adha (a Muslim holiday) and the boys had the week off of school. Katie was gracious enough to give me a much needed week off from church responsibilities and I've been able to catch up on so many things around the house ... for starters, we have a fully stocked fridge and pantry again! I was also able to spend a lot of time with the boys preparing for Nicholas' 6th (belated) birthday party. His birthday was last Thursday, but with so many people traveling this week for the holiday and me being stretched so thin for so long, we decided to postpone his party. He wants a Minecraft themed party ... his latest obsession. And thanks to Pinterest, we have tons of great party ideas! I'll be sure to post pictures afterwards.
So life is starting to look up again and I thought I'd take a moment to update my blog.