I, like most of America, was pretty fascinated by the interview Oprah Winfrey gave last week to Barbara Walters. I have grown up watching Oprah, from afterschool to after work to on maternity leave to being home and looking forward to it as a time out for me. Nowadays I can watch maybe once every two weeks, as the four o'clock hour in my house has become increasingly chaotic with afterschool homework, discussions about the day at school, beginning dinner preparations, and caring for a one year old.
I honor her desire to strive for greatness, her motivational speeches, her work ethic, her honesty, and her integrity. I think she's a great human being.
Part of her interview was about what she wants to do with her life, and how she wants God to wear her out: use up everything she's got to help other people.
And all I can think of is how obvious it is that she is not raising children.
I am struggling right now with the question of What Is My Purpose On Earth, and I completely and fully embrace and adore that God has blessed me with three healthy children to raise. But is there more? Am I so exhausted by meeting the day to day demands of these little miracles that I can't even imagine life beyond their childhood? I trust that God has a wondrous, meaningful plan for me that will become clear as time goes on: if anything, God's plan has always been fairly clear for me.
Because I want God to wear me out, too, and use me for greatness.
But after waking up at 5:45am, making breakfasts and lunches for the kids, sending them off to school, giving Alec a bath, getting myself and Alec dressed and out the door, going grocery shopping, managing Alec's first haircut, taking pictures of my suddenly grown-up-looking boy, grabbing some lunch, going to my parents' house, making 15 pounds of fudge for Christmas parties and gifts, coming home, checking my mental to-do list, unpacking groceries, answering emails, talking to the girls when they get home, putting some new family pictures in frames, getting dinner ready, helping Jenna with her homework, reminding Michaela to practice her viola, negotiating too-numerous-to-count peace treaties between the girls, making dinner, clearing the table, doing the dishes, talking with Dan about his day, supervising two reluctant shower-takers, one in one bathroom and one in the other, getting their jammies on, drying their hair, blogging, playing with Alec, and putting the girls to bed.... I am completely worn out and totally used up.
Mom greatness is just different than Greatness-With-a-Capital-G-Greatness.
It's not flashy, it's not breathtaking, it's quiet and it's a marathon.
It is ego-less and it is not about me in the least.
It is not about MY greatness, but Michaela, Jenna and Alec's Greatness.
And I love them.