Friday, January 23, 2009

Unbalanced That is the best word to describe my life right now and it is darn painful. The stress of learning this new position at work - attempting to find the rhythm and balance between work and home, the different schedule, understanding the authority and commitment to my two lives - it is excruciating. When I'm at work, it's like I don't have any other life. I guess that is how my mind chooses to compartmentalize it. I focus on the needs of my team - I'm always thinking to myself - am I serving them the best way possible? Am I ensuring that someday they will be independent and I'm there to run interference only? That is definitely the goal. The everyday annoyances get in my way - email that doesn't quit, meetings for hours and hours, nitpicking and infighting - or maybe just misunderstandings. I feel joy at their successes, I feel pain when they fail. It is as if they are my children away from home (although they are not child-like in anyway). I care for them and want them to be independent and confident. Home is always a mix of schedules that don't seem to fall where they should, overtired children, overflowing baskets of laundry and counter tops full of dishes. (Did I mention perpetual crumbs on the floor?) The changes are taking a toll - Jerry is tired and at his wits end at the end of the day (I felt that way almost everyday I spent at home with the kids also). He has taken on more than his share of the work and he does not complain - almost to the point that I can feel his pain without him even telling me. I break down, we clear the air. I recommit to my side of the work at whatever cost to keep the balance that we need. It reminds me of another favorite song (and you thought I had veered away from my song theme, eh?) Sara Groves again - "When it Was Over" from the "Add to the Beauty" CD. In this song it is a hidden line buried in a verse that touches me to the core - "There is a hope that whispers a vow, a promise to stay while we're working it out." I'm so grateful that Jerry whispered that vow - that he has promised to stay while I'm working this out. I would never have expected anything less, but I needed that confirmation in the middle of my breakdown. But isn't that how life is anyway? We are always trying to work things out - our lives are always a piece of artwork in progress. We don't really understand what the medium is we are using or what the colors are, but maybe we get a glimpse of that pure love or purpose that God has given us in the hug of a friend, the sincerity of a compliment, the discussion of the spiritual realm. The song's main chorus - "Love wash over a multitude of things, make us whole" reminds us that only love can make us whole. We get a glimpse of that in the love of family, friends, and our spouses. Someday that wholeness - that perfect love of God will be truly known to us. In the meantime, we remain unbalanced and live our days working it out with the promise of that vow - that he is always with us.

2 comments:

Rich said...

Jen,

For a person in management, books by Patrick Lencioni are invaluable. They are incredibly easy to read and right on. The Five Dysfunctions of a Team and Death By Meeting are crucial for someone in your position. The Three Signs of a Miserable Job and The Three Big Questions for a Frantic Family are also tremendous. You can find his stuff in any bookstore and/or check out www.tablegroup.com Lencioni is a Christian and his stuff is right on.

Clare said...

Your work must be crazy right now! Jerry is an awesome hubby - there are so many hubbies out there who wouldn't help out. It does seem like the picking up and what not never ends. But you know what? It does and then you feel sad wondering where your babies went...