I am many things. I’m the girl who wants to go somewhere and be somebody and the one who’s happiest at home. I’m the mama who occasionally escapes to the bathroom JUST FOR A LITTLE PEACE AND QUIET ALREADY but cries on the first day of school and secretly relished a recent cold that kept one of my babies at home with me. I rarely feel like the richest, most beautiful, or coolest person in the room but often feel like the happiest to be me. And though many days I lament that I’m always the one being left at home while others go off to do things, when it’s my turn to do things I feel great big what-am-I-thinkings and almost unstoppable guilt.
That was my frame of my mind in September the day I left for the STORY conference in Chicago. I was dropping my kids off at their schools, saying goodbye for several days, knowing I would miss Saturday’s football games and anything and everything that could go wrong in their little hearts while I was away from them when a song came on Christian radio – a guy singing to his children:
I wish that I could be your everything
Be the one to give you all the things you need
Sometimes I’m gonna let you down
But there’s Someone if you just believe
Be your hero like He’s always been for me
Darling, Jesus is the one you need
At this point I burst. in. to tears. Poor Drew left the car with me spouting desperate goodbyes, apologies for abandonment, and explanations that I wasn’t really that upset it was just unique timing and THAT HORRIBLE SONG THAT CAME OUT OF NOWHERE AND RUINED ME.
What with having found comfort in that particular name myself a few times over the years, I obviously hope that my children will learn to be comforted in it as well. But it’s that third line that really gets me. That’s the one that I so get. I get it way deep down where I know that on top of all my compassion and kindness and strength of spirit, I’m also capable of great cowardice and selfish, selfish plans. I know it every Monday when I swear my passionate nature has an actual chemical reaction to the fact that it is a day of the week largely believed to be HORRID. I know it when evening approaches and I recoil at the question, “What’s for supper” like I’m being attacked by a rabid animal. I know it a lot.
Sometimes I’m gonna let you down.
That’s the truth. And the only thing I know to do is own it, maybe have a little more compassion for those who can’t always be perfect for me, and point my children to anything I’ve found that rarely or never fails.