Wednesday, April 18, 2012

A Post on Being Overwhelmed


These past few weeks have been a non-stop trial for me. Anniversary dates of deaths, the due date of when I was supposed to have the baby I miscarried in September, a neighbor who is constantly needing me to do everything for her, and those normal life things like breaking a wisdom tooth and your husband getting stitches and the resulting hospital/dentist bills. The guilt, the pain, the work, trying so hard to be like Christ and be patient in dealing with someone who isn’t really a “friend” yet has no one else. I look at my husband, who is also so very overwhelmed. I look at my kids who are basically just playing outside and reading books, and watching movies. Their momma is overwhelmed.

For a couple of weeks, I just tried to keep going. Pushed myself harder. Worried non-stop and ran around constantly, feeling like I still am achieving nothing. I would fall asleep without praying sometimes. I would wake up still exhausted, not looking forward to another day of this. The depression was getting me lower and lower.

I finally stopped and realized, I can’t do this anymore. I wasn’t being a good wife, or a good mom. I felt I wasn’t even being a good person! I was just running and running with no point or purpose trying to keep everyone happy. The kids were miserable, they were acting up trying to get attention. They were bored… and I felt like this:

overwhelmed2

I started dreaming of what life would be like if it was just simple. I probably would take it for granted and not be appreciative. I decided something needed to change. So I made sure to do the “simple things”. Prayer, Scripture Study, etc. We all know the answers. During my scripture study, I found some really neat things that I wish to share with you. Also, I bought Stephanie Nielson’s book “Heaven is Here” and read the entire thing in an afternoon. That really made me want to get my booty moving to take care of my family. I highly recommend it.

General Conference came at such a blessed time for me. I needed to hear those words. I needed to get my priorities straight. I needed to focus on my family. One of the most important things I learned is that I need to block out needless distractions. This is different for every person. My needless distractions are not the same as yours…. I needed to sit down and really look at my life and literally make a list and x out the needless distractions. Yes my house is not as “perfect” as I’d like. But I can worry about that when the kids are grown and all I have left to do is clean. I am not posting to my blog the way I dreamed of… but Heavenly Father understands that I need to learn some lessons first. Sometimes supper consists of running to taco bell. But no one is perfect and I really love their double decker tacos! In all honesty, I needed time to block out the needless distractions. I am still looking at my journal, writing my list, x-ing out the things that I don’t need. Trying to deal with the guilt!

My next “quest”- to make goals. I need to have a list of things I’m working on. My list used to consist of millions of things like “ bake this for neighbor” , “ get this laundry done”, “ call so and so and make sure they are ok”, it all seemed to be so much. Major overwhelming list. I decided that for the rest of this week, I was going to study my scriptures, and general conference etc, and focus on a few big goals, that I could complete successfully this week. Most of them have to do with my children. I take my job as a momma, so seriously. When I’m not doing all the things I want to be doing, all of the things that we have been commanded to do… I feel extreme guilt, which turns into depression. So I made a list for this week. Small goals, that will take just a little time, but the rewards would be great. I would feel successful. As I prayed and asked my Heavenly Father what it was that He wanted me to teach my children this week, I was surprised as the thoughts came rolling in. I wrote them all down, then chose a few that I could concentrate on this week. A certain conference talk I want to share with the kids, a certain parable that I was blessed to have a neat “object lesson” idea on, etc. Then there were some personal goals, being a sweeter wife to my husband. Going thru my prayer list, three times a day. I just needed to learn to calm down!!!!!! Guilt is my biggest thing. I struggle so much with it. But I feel less overwhelmed and guilty when I know that my to-do list is inspired and that they are small goals that I know I can succeed with. There is not a million little things that really have no significance. I need to concentrate on things of an eternal nature.

I love this quote by Richard G. Scott, :
“ A pebble held close to the eye appears to be a gigantic obstacle. Cast on the ground, it is seen in perspective. Likewise, problems or trials in our lives need to be viewed in the perspective of scriptural doctrine. Otherwise they can easily overtake our vision, absorb all our energy, and deprive us of the joy and beauty the Lord intends us to receive here on earth.”

It is all about perspective. Hmm… easy to say and understand, not so easy to do, especially when the guilt starts in. Maybe we all need a long bubble bath!! How do you deal with being overwhelmed? What things have you learned, that can help us?

I leave you with this one special quote, from one of my most favorite people in the world.. Sister Hinckley. How I love that woman. She was smart. We can be smart too!
simplifying


I say these things, in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, AMEN!!!!!!!
love, jl~

47 comments:

  1. The one thing that helps me when I feel overwhelmed is to make sure I say a heartfelt prayer at the beginning of the day. I ask the Lord what He wants me to do that day, and I pray that I will be able to listen to His promptings throughout the day to accomplish not my own goals, but His goals for me.

    I've found that when I do that, things just seem to fall into place and the crazed haze I was in settles down and I can see and think more clearly.

    I also try to remember that one talk about good, better, and best. I always try to keep those "best" things at the forefront of my mind, and I take time throughout the day to say a little mental prayer and ask, "Is this what I'm supposed to be doing right now?" When I have assurance that I am where I am supposed to be, doing what I'm supposed to be doing, then I can live in that moment and not worry about the next hour or the next day or the rest of the week. :-)

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  2. I love those ideas! I also love that talk and I need to re-read it!

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  3. thank you for this. I just had my 4th baby and we moved across the united states within the last month. our life is in shambles!! Reading this helped me to reconsider what is important, really.

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    1. Heather! You are strong!!! I am a wimp... I couldn't move across the country! Congrats on the new baby, and I will keep you in my prayers!
      Love, JL~

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  4. It is no fun being overwhelmed...it happens to the best of us and it looks like you have a great plan. I could just feel the calm in reading this post. I've been there (and still trying to get out) and even took a 2 month break from blogging. Luckily, my blog was running on auto pilot and it felt wonderful! My goals to are to do the basic. I figure if my hobbies are meant to be that if I am consistent on my basics than I will find more time for the other things in my life I should or need to be doing.

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    1. Defintely good advice Michelle... I feel so sad when I can't work on my blog, or I dont make time for it. Sometime's I just need to once again look at that list and make those x's!!!! Then I will have time for things I enjoy! Also.... summer is coming, I always seem to slow down more when it's summer and enjoy life more. I think it is because I don't have the kids education constantly weighing on my mind, they can just relax and play and learn :) Love, JL~

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  5. It is no fun being overwhelmed...it happens to the best of us and it looks like you have a great plan. I could just feel the calm in reading this post. I've been there (and still trying to get out) and even took a 2 month break from blogging. Luckily, my blog was running on auto pilot and it felt wonderful! My goals to are to do the basic. I figure if my hobbies are meant to be that if I am consistent on my basics than I will find more time for the other things in my life I should or need to be doing.

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  6. Thank you so much!! I'm wondering if you created the design of the quote at the end. If so, would you be willing to share it in a format that I could print in a 8x10? I would love to have that in front of me every day :). Thanks again.

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    1. I found it on pinterest! I love that place. I will try and go back and see who made it.... then we will contact them!!! :)

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    2. Here's the link! Looks like she has tons of wonderful things to print! :)
      http://www.itworksforbobbi.com/2011/12/free-friday-simplify-printable.html

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  7. A friend of my posted this on facebook. Thank you for the reminder. I have eight children and feel like I spend most of my time driving somebody somewhere or picking someone up. Simplifying is difficult when you want your children to be involved i good things, church activiites, temple, choir etc. So I decided that whenever I am in the car driving, I will listen to conference talks or uplifting church music. What a difference it has made! I don't feel like my time is wasted driving. In fact I look forward to getting in the car!

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    1. What a wonderful idea! I love how we can all inspire each other and come up with such great ideas!!!! Defintely stealing this one :)
      Love, JL~

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  8. I am so impressed with this post! Thank you for sharing the Spirit through what you wrote here. I feel like I can do this crazy thing called motherhood if I only seek the Lord's help. Thank you for your words of encouragement!

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    1. Heather, we have to seek the Lord's help and it is also awesome when we are able to lean on each other in this crazy thing called motherhood!!!! Praying for you! JL~

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  9. My life has a but fallen apart these past two months. My sister died in a horrible accident, my little girl was in the hospital, my husband is working 60 hrs a week. This was exactly what I needed to hear. I have been locking myself in my closet just to get away, and to cry where my four children (7,5,3,14months) can't find me. Thank you for your thoughts....it is extremely uplifting, and gave me a great perspective.

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    1. Praying for you! I understand so much about trying to be strong and not let your kids see you down... I prefer to lock myself in the bathroom myself... lol! You will be in my prayers! Love, JL~

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  10. Hi i just found your blog for first time! Title "overwhelmed" was key for me, leading to your blog. I have been so overwhelmed this past year, with school semesters, and changing location of where i attend church, enduring unnecessary judgements, so yes, conference was welcome! Right now, I've been helping a single mother, with her child. Boy, I did not forsee this, when i accepted an request to help watch her child while she works. Its been one thing after another. a while back, I wondered what that Lord was trying to tell me. Thought he's maybe showing me the way towards which degree to go into, career wise. I had eye aimed on one goal, but our lord had diff thing in mind. I guess that single mother and other person's dysfunctional family life made me wonder, if that was the direction i'm supposed to bypass and make, and still be in Education?

    I'd like to request from you...ideas on how to accept other people's advice and not be so selfish single minded. I've had hard time, when someone wont take my suggestions, when I already know it's right, and this person is learning things like food groups, for children; things I already knew. Id appreciate something along that direction. So I can share with her. Thanks :)

    I'm adding your blog to my "favorite list". Thank you for your efforts!
    Sincerely,
    Leanne

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    1. Wow Leanne! We sound so much alike!! I tend to find people or they find me, that need help with pretty much everything, like the neighbor in my article etc, and also with two teenage mothers last year, and while I did end up helping them and "teaching" them, I was making myself sick and my family was sacrificing. I get guilty ( there's that word again!) because I want to show Christ's love, Christ's patience and charity. I will defintely have to think and pray on your request.... I need help with that too!!!!! You are in my prayers!! Love, JL~

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  11. I love both of those quotes. Sometimes I have guilt that I am not as detailed in my day to day as most moms, but then I read stuff like this, about simplifying, and wonder if I am not already focusing on the right things just because I mentally can't deal with more. I used to spend a lot of time beating myself up because I love Taco Bell too, and my house is FAR from perfect. But I feel I am at the best pace I can manage right now, and I have time to improve and a lot will just happen when the little ones aren't little anymore. But I am learning to be okay to be me, as imperfect as that is. I have been reading a bit of the book Glimpses of Marjory Pay Hinkley and it is so great. It's been a hard couple of years for us, and sometimes going without is a great way to focus on the eternal stuff. It automatically eliminates some distractions (although it's still distracting at times to want them and not be able to get them! :)

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    1. Jeanne- I have to tell you, right here right now, Glimpses of Marjorie Pay Hinckley is my eternally favorite book in the world. If you want to feel better about yourself, read this book. I will have to find the article I wrote about this book, because I had a really special sacred experience while reading it. It has a beautiful prominent spot on my bookshelf!! :) Praying for you Jeanne!!! Love, JL~

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  12. Thank you for sharing your feelings. It's good to know that I'm not alone.

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    1. You are defintely not alone!!!! Praying for you! Love, JL~

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  13. Glad I found your blog today. We have a severely autistic son who goes through times when he is abusive to himself and others. As her approaches 20, these "2 year old tantrms" are more and more difficult to handle. My other children are so good but I worry about the impact the chaos has in their lives. Add working full time and being in the YW pres, yep I'm always feeling overwelmed. Breaks my heart when FHE ends up with my hubby and the other 2 going to a movie while I watch my son since he is having a bad night, but you just do what you can do. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Your reply touched my heart, my daughter Marlee ( you can read more about her on my family blog www.momtothreebabies.blogspot.com ) has autism, and she defintely has the tantrums, I am not sure what I will do when she is so much bigger than me. I will be praying for you and your family. Remember FHE can be all of you sitting down at the dinner table and sharing a favorite scripture. Something simple. Praying for you! JL~

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  14. I felt exactly that way last fall and after October's General Conference I felt like I had to simplify my life. I was being pulled in too many directions and I needed to focus on my family and children more. It was actually hard for other people to understand this process and I felt some guilt for a while. But today, I am so much happier and my family is stronger.

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    1. Sarah- I agree with you completely.... the Prophet and general authorities are inspired!!! Heavenly Father blesses us so much with their words, I feel that my family is growing stronger too!JL~

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  15. Elder Dallin H. Oaks ("Be Wise", BYU–Idaho Devotional, Nov. 2006):

    Some years ago Elder Neal A. Maxwell taught how we can be guided by this standard of ‘wisdom and order’ and be comforted by the assurance that we are not required to run faster than we have strength (see ‘Wisdom and Order,’ Ensign, June 1994, p. 41). In describing how we can ‘manage ourselves wisely’ he quoted Anne Morrow Lindbergh, who said, 'My life cannot implement in action the demands of all the people to whom my heart responds.' Elder Maxwell taught that 'some choices are matters of preference, not principle,' adding that ‘wisdom and order [will] help us to separate preferences from principles’ (p. 43).

    We are wise to conclude that we can’t do it all and that we are not required to. When we feel overwhelmed with all that presses upon us, we should pray for inspiration to guide us in identifying what is required by eternal principles. These things command priority. We do them first. Then, in the time that remains, we pray for wisdom to exercise our preferences among those things that are merely good but not essential. Finally, when inspired wisdom has guided our choices, we proceed, as President Hinckley has taught us, to just ‘do the very best [we] can.'

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  16. Sis. Patricia T. Holland ("The Soul’s Center", BYU Devotional, Jan. 1987):

    I believe that as women we are becoming so concerned about having perfect figures, or straight A's, or professional status, or even absolute motherly success, that we are being torn from our true selves. We often worry so much about pleasing and performing for others that we lose our own uniqueness, that full and relaxed acceptance of ourselves as a person of worth and individuality. Too many women watch helplessly as their lives unravel from the core that centers and sustains them. Too many are like a ship at sea without sail or rudder, tossed to and fro (as the Apostle Paul said) until more and more of us are genuinely, rail-grabbingly seasick.

    Where is the sureness that allows us to sail our ship--whatever winds may blow--with the master seaman's triumphant cry, ‘Steady as she goes’? Where is the inner stillness we so cherish and for which our sex traditionally has been known? In the shadow of the twenty-first century can we find what Charles Morgan once described as ‘the stilling of the soul within the activities of the mind and body [as] still as [the center] of a revolving wheel is still’? (cited by Anne Morrow Lindbergh, Gift from the Sea [New York: Pantheon, 1955], pp. 50­51).

    I believe we can find it--the steady footing and the stilling of the soul--by turning away from the fragmentation of physical preoccupations (whether it be thin or fat) of superwoman careers or endless popularity contests and returning instead to the wholeness of our soul.

    One woman not of our faith but whose writings I love is Anne Morrow Lindbergh. In commenting on the female despair and general torment of our times she writes: ‘The Feminists did not look... far [enough] ahead; they laid down no rules of conduct. For them it was enough to demand the privileges... . And [so] woman today is still searching. We are aware of our hunger and needs, but still ignorant of what will satisfy them. With our garnered free time, we are more apt to drain our creative springs than to refill them. With our pitchers [in hand], we attempt... to water a field, [instead of] a garden. We throw ourselves indiscriminately into committees and causes. Not knowing how to feed the spirit, we try to muffle its demands in distractions. Instead of stilling the center, the axis of the wheel, we add more centrifugal activities to our lives--which tend to throw us [yet more] off balance.’

    ‘Mechanically we have gained, in the last generation, but spiritually we have... lost.’ [Gift from the Sea, p. 52].

    I have pondered long and hard about the feeding of our inner self. It is no coincidence that we speak of "feeding the spirit" just as we would speak of feeding the body. We need constant nourishment for both. The root word hale (as in hale and hearty) is the common root to words like whole, health, heal, and holy. Our health and our wholeness are unquestionably linked with our holiness. We need very much for body, mind, and spirit to come together, to unite in one healthy, stable soul.

    (Sis. Holland goes on to describe how that "stillness" can be regained. The rest can be read at http://speeches.byu.edu/reader/reader.php?id=6991)

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    1. Love this quote.... and it is so true. We are so blessed to have such wise women and men guiding us!! Love, JL~

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  17. I have been there so many times!! Thank you for your insites, and your wisdom. I really enjoyed reading your post.

    On hard days, I love to listen to President Utchdorf's talks. He seems to touch my heart every time.
    This is one of my favorites: Happiness, your heritage
    http://www.lds.org/ensign/2008/11/happiness-your-heritage?lang=eng&cid=facebook-shared

    as is the forget me not talk... http://www.lds.org/broadcasts/article/general-relief-society-meeting/2011/09/forget-me-not?lang=eng&query=forget+me+nots

    Happily ever after talk:
    http://www.lds.org/broadcasts/article/general-young-women-meeting/2010/03/your-happily-ever-after?lang=eng&query=happily+ever+after

    Thank you again, your blog is wonderful. I hope the links I shared might help someone else.

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    1. Thank you so much for sharing!!!! I love Pres Uchtdorf and my kids love to say his name!! :) These are perfect talks to share! Thanks! JL~

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  18. Elder Neal A. Maxwell ("Wisdom and Order", Ensign, June 1994):

    We unwisely often write checks against our time accounts as we never would dare do, comparably, against our bank accounts. Sometimes we make so many commitments, they become like the vines in the allegory of Jacob, threatening to “overcome the roots,” including the roots of family relationships, friendships, and relationships with God.

    (Wherefore, Ye Must Press Forward [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1977], 102):

    Some mothers in today's world feel ‘cumbered’ by home duties and are thus attracted by other more ‘romantic’ challenges. Such women could make the same error of perspective and priorities that Martha made. The woman, for instance, who deserts the cradle in order to help defend civilization against the barbarians may well later meet, among the barbarians, her own neglected child. The modern Marthas may include those who are careful and troubled by many things, some deservedly. But they needlessly leave kitchen and cradle not for instruction by the selfless Savior of mankind, but for self-serving enterprises that will be distance-producing as far as their primary relationships are concerned.

    ("Talk of the Month", New Era, May 1971):

    Our failures in the home clearly call for compensatory institutions, but the home lies at the headwaters of the stream of civilization and we must keep it happy and pure. When the home fails, polluted, we as Church members must support wise efforts at downstream “treatment” to filter out the pollution and sorrow without becoming so fascinated with the filters and with rehabilitation that we ignore prevention and desert our post at the headwaters. Time spent in the hangar doing needed preparation and maintenance is never as glamorous as putting foam on the runway, and building a happy home may not seem to have the immediacy of impact as does counseling in a juvenile detention center. Both are necessary, but one is clearly where the emphasis should fall in the economy of heaven.

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  19. Thank you so much for being willing to share your challenges, it is such an inspiration to me. Not that I want others to struggle, but since they do, it's nice to have someone to relate to. I'm trying to get myself back to the "basics" you mention - daily prayer, scripture study, etc. - but it's so much more difficult than some realize. Thank you for your words of wisdom and encouragement!

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    1. Thank you so much for commenting! I really appreciate it! I wrote this article just out of major need for myself, so thankful that other people are able to get some ideas too!!! JL~

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  20. I think it all comes down to understanding that the Adversary is putting the full-court press against the family these days, and what better way to do it than by flooding us with options and distracting and destabilizing the defenses of our homes.

    Belonging to a Church with such a service oriented culture, it can be very easy to see so many service opportunities, and so many in need that one could find themselves adrift in a sea of suffering. There is so much more media coverage of the suffering in the world, and so much more awareness of those in great need. If everything is coming at you at once, it can be very easy to lose sight of what is most important, and those things the Lord has charged us to protect above all else.

    We've all heard the line from Spock on Star Trek that goes, "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few", but do we understand that's really only a half-truth? He missed the part that David O. McKay appended to the end: "but the needs of one's family outweigh the needs of the many." I think for those who have big hearts and a great compassion for loving to lose sight of the fact that the stewardship given to those who belong to our own families must take precedence over those who are not, even if the need is great.

    Not everyone has the same capacity to serve. I think we forget about the aspect of the Parable of the Talents that it isn't just about talking about talents, but also the understanding that we all have differing capacities. We are all at different points of our development and we each need different divinely appointed trials and limitations. The Remember that the Lord gave the same reward to the servant who made 2 talents as the one who made 5. It isn't the amount that mattered to the Master, it was that they were doing the best they could for their current capacity.

    Christian service is a powerful thing, and can have very drastic and immediate results. This, however, can also be a challenge if pitted up against the drudgery and monotony of the attendant functions necessary to care and provide for those in our families. One could be easily get "hooked" on that sensation and focus on it more than the greatest stewardship and responsibility we will have on this earth.

    There are many guides that the Lord has given through his servants to help navigate the waters of all the is pouring down upon us that I think can help us to use "wisdom and order" to "separate principles from preferences", and even give a pecking order between the many principles of the Gospel. (Although, even if we do everything "right", we should still expect to experience some "Divine Discontent" as Elder Maxwell put it from wishing we could do more).

    Here are a few that I've found helpful:

    "Mothers Who Know" (http://www.lds.org/liahona/2007/11/mothers-who-know)

    "Essential / Necessary / Nice-To-Do" (http://ce.byu.edu/cw/womensconference/archive/2011/pdf/JulieB_openingS.pdf)

    "What Will You Make Room for In Your Wagon" (http://speeches.byu.edu/reader/reader.php?id=7064)

    "Setting Goals and Managing Time" (http://institute.lds.org/manuals/the-gospel-and-the-productive-life-student-manual/prod-1-3.asp) - See the section for Pres. Hinckley on the "fourfold responsibility" - I think his item #2 in his list could relate to the wives/mothers and their homemaking / housekeeping duties as part of their "nurturing" role.

    "The Gift of Knowing" (http://www.lds.org/new-era/1984/11/the-gift-of-knowing)

    "First Things First" (http://www.lds.org/ensign/2001/05/first-things-first)

    "Focus and Priorities" (http://www.lds.org/ensign/2001/05/focus-and-priorities)

    "Unclutter Your Life" (http://www.lds.org/ensign/1992/05/unclutter-your-life)

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  21. I think we've all been there! Something that helps me is to stop focusing on all I need (want/wish I could) accomplish and focus on what I actually DO accomplish. Sometimes it helps to stop and give yourself a little credit instead of beating yourself up for not finishing A,B,C, & D. If you want to read more about it, I blogged it here: http://sparetimecontinuum.blogspot.com/2011/05/overwhelmed-much.html
    I appreciate you helping people put it into perspective. I probably also ought to pray about what I can do with my kids to feel like I'm being a more active parent. Sometimes it feels like I'm only covering their basic survival and entertainment, ya know?

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    1. What a good point Jocelyn, one day I made a list of all of the things I did in that day. It was so exciting to see all of the things I did... I truly felt like I was accomplishing nothing, but was so surprised at what I did that day! Just a normal day! I can't wait to read your blog post! Thanks for commenting! JL~

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  22. I really, really loved reading this today! I have 5 amazing children, and when I'm going through all the motions of keeping our life afloat, I tend to forget what is most important! Thanks for the reminder of the standard "sunday school" answer ;) ...Today, I will be getting back to basics! That is all I need to fill up my happy bucket! Thank you:)
    ...Also, maybe a bit of advice? What did you do with the situation of "needy neighbor?" I am in a similar situation, I know what Christ taught, and I try to be kind and helpful to my "not really a friend yet." It is terribly overwhelming to have this person knocking loudly on my door constantly. I want to be good to her, and help her as much as I can. I just wondered if you came to any conclusions or tactful solutions on how to help someone, but also have boundaries?

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    1. Sometimes I get so worried about offending someone who needs help...that I can't ever say no. I'm worried they will go inactive, or hate me forever if I refuse them even once. But then I have to remember that we all have agency to choose and if they 'choose' to not accept my help for what I am and can give, then that should be their problem and not mine. Also recruiting others to help is totally fine!

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    2. I have the worst problem with saying no!!!!! :)

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    3. I prayed like crazy!!!! It went on for two months though.... running in between my home and hers, spending every evening late into the night there, driving her to dr appts that are an hour and a half away, then she started "needing" my husband to do car fixups, home fixups etc, when I was doing all the housework and shopping for her and so much. I prayed so hard. I didn't know what to do. Finally, I was able to talk to the woman that was closest to kin to her.... I told her i was making myself sick! They were able to bring in home health care and hospice ( she has lung cancer) and when she came home from the hospital one day and called and said i need you to take me to walmart to buy curtains... i thought this is just ridiculous. She had just arrived home from the hospital, she is dying, she wants new curtains. I told her I couldnt right that second. She hasn't spoken to me since, she is angry at me. But I realized that Heavenly Father was helping me to "block out needless distractions" etc. Lots of prayer, and then divine intervention! Also, my father in law explained to me that even Christ had to stop sometimes and rest, also, if they wont accept the help you can give, then you can't force them. In my case, she wouldn't accept that I couldnt leave right that second... and it probably wouldve stopped weeks earlier if I hadn't dropped everything whenever she called. Which was all the time. I feel much lighter ! The guilt has lifted and I realize that I did my best.

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    4. Thanks for those thoughts! I never thought of it that way...
      I have been praying for strength to be able to help her, and stillmanage my family's needs, too...This woman has NOBODY at all. I am trying hard to love her, and not judge her. I think that the most difficult thing for me, is when she knows I am home, but I can't answer the door...She just stays there and knocks LOUDLY until I answer. For up to a 1/2 hour so far. It's usually when I am breastfeeding my baby that this happens. When I answer, she just wants to talk,not the EMERGENCY you would expect. ie: Me listen to her tell me her entire life story for an hour, whilst my children are crying or needing me. She is so aggressive, that she will literally move her position to stand in my way and block me from walking when I am trying to load my kids in my van, to go somewhere.
      Last night, I declined to talk to her, and told her I was really busy. I pretty much pushed her out the door, as politely as possible. She is angry now, I'm sure...She hasn't been back over yet, and she's usually here every 2 hours. I think you are right though! It's her choice to be angry, if what I can give her isn't enough. Thank you! I'm still feeling a bit guilty, but my family is my priority, and I will still try to serve her when I can. Just not when I should be serving my family instead. Whew! Ready for this stress to be GONE!

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  23. Thank You. I just found this, and honestly, it was really what I needed to read today. I love hearing that other people are experiencing similar challenges, but that they have hope. I am so grateful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ giving us that perspective, and it is a comfort to know that I am not alone in bearing my burdens. Thanks again, this was an awesome post!

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  24. I appreciate reading articles/posts like this from real women, leading real mommy lives! I have five kids, 8, 6, 4, 2, and 1 and homeschool them. It does get overwhelming, but at the same time my little family is so blessed and luckily I've been blessed to be able to recognize that. So when I do start to lose control and think I can't keep up, I just remember to realign what I'm doing with what I should be doing. I have to do that every couple of months or so, reorganize my life and schedule. I find when I do I am so much happier, my kids are happier and my marriage is better! I appreciate also reading all the comments on here of people who all deal with the same emotional issues! God is so good to us and I'm so grateful that we can find strength and solace in reading others words!

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    1. Amen to that!!!! I have loved all of the amazing comments!!! We have a facebook page everyone... if you want to hop over there, we can have awesome conversations like this daily :)
      http://www.facebook.com/#!/groups/168800359856535/

      We would love to have you all! :)

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  25. I used to be the gal that everyone called to take of their kids. I was very confident and I did a really great job at handling 5-7 kids at a time (most of which were not mine). Once I had my third child (this year) and started homeschooling my oldest (also started this year) I finally mad the choice that I would have to just say 'no.' I felt horribly guilty at first, and surprisingly the mothers on the other end of the phone line would also try and guilt me into caving in. Mind you, I would never receive compensation for babysitting because I wanted to be a good friend. I realized that what I needed to do for my family had me at my limit and that my friends needed to reach out to other ladies in the ward that were wanting to help serve their fellow sisters. In the temple we are asked to build the kingdom of Heaven and for me, I feel that the kingdom I am trying to build is right here in my home. I love to serve those in need and help where I can but my priority is to my family. They deserve me and I deserve them. Thank you for this great article!

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Thanks for taking the time to comment! It helps me to know what to write about, what you like and what you don't like! Have a fantastic family day! :) Love, JL