the post I seem to write every Christmas

christmas tree

Sometimes I’m a little too hard on me.

I can’t find it in my heart to be gracious to me.

I can’t find the time to give myself a break.

I am being propelled by my belief in other people’s expectations and I am just on a roller-coaster to burn out.

Last night Mr and I had a chat about the end of school present for both girls’ classes. I have seen this great idea on Pinterest that involves a whole lot of craft, a whole lot of time and effort, and a whole lot of angst.

He reasonably counselled me against this approach.

Me, I just got mad.

As I see it, other people will be doing this. Other mums will be creating beauty from plastic cups, toilet rolls and bits of string, why not us. I went to bed cranky. And I woke up grumpy, and stressed, because now I have to find another Pinterest worthy idea to give the kids at the end of this year.

Then at the school gate, I thought, “I’ll just ask”.

Guess what?

All the other mums aren’t doing this.

Some kids are doing cards, some are doing gifts, but not everyone.

My expectations both for myself and for the other mums are way off!

This desire to be seen to be doing the right thing, to please people. This is coming from me, not my kids. They don’t care less. And what’s more it is causing angst in my relationships, and a stressed out unhappy mum that is just not stopping.

I know I write a post like this every Christmas. I know my last post was about the pause in Christmas.

Yet I still just don’t get it.

How many times do I have to have this conversation with Mr? How many times do I have to read about the “unforced rhythms of grace” before it sinks in? How often do I have to get myself to this point of stress before I actually see reason?

This people-pleasing perfectionist still has a lot to learn.

Join me on the journey?


PS – because it never hurts to read these words again:

Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly. 

Matthew 11:28-30 (MSG)