The Little Mother That Could

All morning I have been struggling to come up with anything to post here today. I finally conceded that it would be a no blog post kind of day. No big deal. I just didn't have the energy or mentality to think of anything creative or original or productive or humorous. Not because of a bad mood...just a too-tired mood.

I picked up Jeigh from preschool and before we left, my girls each checked out a book from the preschool library (basically a book shelf crammed with old discarded books). When I saw the book that Elle had picked, my heart cheered a bit.

The book was obviously aged and I loved that it was. This was a book my mother read to me when I was little. I remembered the pictures and the words so vividly as it was one she read to us often. It had been burned into my memories. I had just forgotten it had been stashed away in my memory until I saw the book in my two-year-old's hands.

We left the school and needing to be busy for the forty minutes in between pick up time for Jeigh and pick up time for Dee, we drove to a convenience store. With the way I had been feeling all morning, I felt the need for a little liquid courage to get through the rest of the day. Liquid courage meaning a tall, cold, fountain Dr. Pepper.

We drove back to the school and waited for the last bell of the day, sipping on our fountain drinks, hoping the caffeine would do the trick to shake me from my sluggish funk. I looked on the dash and saw the book. What a perfect time to sneak some of our reading minutes in. So I opened the cover and began to read.

As I read the words that were so familiar to my mind, I began to think this book could be just the trick for teaching my children that they can do hard things. Like picking up their backpacks and coats off the floor or eating onions or staying away from the tempting soap dispenser. Hard things like that.

But as I read the words I think I can-I think I can-I think I can my voice started to quiver and the words blurred as my eyes filled with tears. I hadn't remembered this book being a sad story...

I realized quite suddenly and with some shock it was me who needed the lesson. So many days, like today I feel...exhaustion. Most days, especially with pregnancy, I feel physically exhausted. Many days it's mental exhaustion that gets me. A lot of days I feel emotionally exhausted or spiritually exhausted. I find myself thinking and even verbalizing I can't do this!

I just can't. It's too much. I'm too tired. I can't do it right so why even try? What is the point?

I feel overwhelmed and under-qualified. I get bogged down with anger or sadness or despair. And my load might as well be a train that needs to be pulled over a hill.

As childish and simple as it sounds, I realized I need to be like the Little Blue Engine and hitch myself to my load.

She tugged and pulled and pulled and tugged and slowly, slowly, slowly they started off...

Puff, puff, chug, chug, went the Little Blue Engine.

"I think I can-I think I can-I think I can-I think I can-I think I can-I think I can-I think I can-I think I can-I think I can."

Up, up, up. Faster and faster and faster and faster the little engine climbed until I last they reached the top of the mountains.

I can do hard things.

Even when I don't think I can.

I can mother these three, almost four children like no one else can. I can tackle that project (or two) I have been putting off. I can forgive others for heart breaks they have caused. I can approach each day with purpose and passion.

I can push and pull and tug and I may go slowly, slowly, slowly at first but at least I am trying and moving forward.

Who knew a long forgotten children's book could put more pep in my step than 20 oz of caffeine?

Now, how to not forget this revelation I had today... Think Jeigh's preschool teacher would mind if I hung onto this book, just so I have a daily reminder???


Jodi said...

This is a wonderful reminder of the tough gal inside us all who can perservere on those neverending, emotional, physically draining days! Thanks for sharing! I love the phrase "I can do hard things". That has been my motto since I heard it in a Conference talk several years ago. And I KNOW YOU can do hard things because you're just awesome~!

Valerie said...

What a cute post! I wish I could have read this post this morning. I really needed the umph. It's truly been one of those days today.

Sarahie said...

Thank you so much for such a beautiful post. I believe I have 2 copies of this book and I can send you my extra. (I have to make sure it hasn't been attacked by the baby, first!) Will you send me your address either through facebook or e-mail (sarahsuzann (at) hotmail (dot) com. Love ya!

Parry's :) said...

Thank you so much for sharing this. I am this exact predicament, I really needed to read this!!!

Erin said...

wow, Evelyn...did you just peek in on my house today? How did you know this is EXACTLY what I needed to read today? (and for the rest of this week) Thanks!

Lisa said...

You seem to have found the key to everyone's life today! Thanks so much for the beautiful reminder!

Sami said...

I'm with everyone else, Evelyn! I feel the exact same way, and I can definitely use this reminder as I attempt to gather my wits to get organized. SO overwhelmed right now, and I'm not even pregnant! You. Are. Awesome.

MiMi said...

What an awesome post, girl.
And the comments...I'm with all of them! :)

Myya said...

Ohhh I loved this post. I remember this book, I love this book! It is so funny because just reading what other moms struggle with helps me to know that my struggles are much the same. Yay for you for pepping up your step & knowing you CAN do it! :)


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