I can voice with deep articulation the exact moments that I have felt the word impact flowing through my life with affirmation and with a thriving presence. Visions of New Orleans and Africa rush through my thinking like roaring waves of impact and although there is great joy in how those seasons have taught my spirit, I can wrestle with the difficulty of striving toward those pinnacle times to be matched in my everyday roles. The “grass is greener” mentality can pump in my veins with a forceful pain that leaves me with all the feels. When you have stood on life building mountains then the valleys can feel deep and low and the ascend/descend along the peaks can draw out all kinds of discontentment, restlessness, not enough, and a yearning for all the unmet places. It can be easy to desire to stay on mountains and wrestle with the glory found in the trenches. It can be easy in those valleys to feel a poverty mindset of “not enough” and out of desperation forget to remember how you never get to the mountaintop without the ascend.
When I talk about a mountaintop, it involves those experiences that draw out a thriving presence and encircle the moment with a nostalgia that carries out in seasons to come. It widens perspective and expands territory and yet at the same time, it has a powerful ability to mark the future experiences with less adventure and with less impact because the stretching question remains, “How could anything ever compare to this moment where I felt most alive and most free?!” As I focus on how to keep moving from those peaks and to muster enough strength to keep adventuring on to new hikes, I hear these words echo within my steps:
Without the ascend and the descend, there would be no peak to stand.
Vulnerability is about sharing the parts of the story that although may be raw to express give light amidst tough places. Although my three children are the light of my life, this season of motherhood has felt more often than desired the trenches for me, instead of the mountaintop. I feel survival, more than thriving, on more days than I can count and the wearisome hand of parenting hard places can just drop kick my heart hard and heavy at times. I have been processing my mountaintops in light of my motherhood journey and a few things have rested on my heart that I would love to share with you.
The abundance is not just in the mountaintop, but rather, it is in the way we journey in faith along the way.
There can be joy found in the trenches of the homemaking that same pb & j sandwich for the hundredth day, with laundry crawling out from every room calling your name to “wash me”, and as you make that soul filled meal for your fellow mama who needs the reminder, “Life can feel like a lot and you need a reminder today you are not alone, me too.”
Impact is not ONLY in the mountaintops- YOU are impactful in how you show up to the trenches of the every day- with mundane difficulties drawing your heart into that push for more. Even in those places, YOU ARE AN IMPACT MAKER.
Life-giving experiences of your past can fuel your present, but do not allow yourself to dwell in places of unmet and unrest on the other side of them.
I know that there are so many mamas who wrestle with the thriving presence of how they felt prior to motherhood – maybe descriptors like these come to mind- energized, capable, investor of people with margin, spontaneous… These are words of freedom and of space. I can wrestle with the guilt of how much I desire at times space and the margin to feel more like my old self, where I had the moments of quiet reflection to fuel me. It has been a 7-year journey for my spirit thus far to take those places of space in myself and intentionally carve out breathing room so that I can manage my role with grace and with love and not with exhaustion and with discontent.
Impact is not ONLY in the masses, it is also seen in the ONE and in the FEW- YOU are impactful in how you invest in YOU and in how you invest in the relationships in your home. YOU ARE AN IMPACT SETTER as you teach your family the importance of rest, of reprieve, of reflection.
The journey of the climb gives forth strength and stamina that may not always be seen in the moment, but felt in miles to come.
We live in a culture that expects immediate relief and quickness of outcome. When that child just keeps on keeping on and we grow weary of the parenting fight, strength and stamina is not always seen forefront. When that person just stays in tension in our life, strength and stamina can feel distant and out of grasp. When life is not going as expected, and we find ourselves dwelling in desire of our pinnacle, most thriving moments, where is stamina felt in those moments?!
Impact does not always come in an event of experience, but rather, it is found in the everyday showing up to the fight. YOU ARE AN IMPACT EXAMPLE OF STAMINA AND STRENGTH BY SIMPLY BEING TRUE TO YOU. YOU are impactful in how you find meaning in the moments that are unrecognized to others and you keep pressing on to love OUT with grace.
Impact may not always be seen to the world, but know that your steadfastness to be present in your story will grant peace in your home that moves mountains.