March 13, 2013
busy season: a guest post by rebekah
Welcome my friend, Rebekah, who is sharing her family's way of navigating busy seasons. I love her advice, especially "don't one up," and thought you all might like to hear from another wife + mom dealing with the more hectic times of the year. She is just a lovely lady all around.
When Lindsey first mentioned “busy season” in a post, I knew exactly what she was talking about.
I know this because my husband and I are both accountants. Before we had kids he worked long, long hours at an accounting firm during busy season, and my schedule wasn’t much fun either.
When my husband transitioned into a new job in a new industry before we had kids, his schedule was like a dream come true. Seeing him walk through the door at 5:30pm? I could get used to that!
And I did! He’s had a really flexible schedule for the past few years, and now that we have two little kids, it’s made all the difference. I won’t say that I’ve taken it for granted, but let’s just say that I’ve become very comfortable with having help with the kids in the evening.
However, a few months back his company started an enormous project, and boy did that put an end to flexibility. He started working crazy hours: going to the office early, staying late, then working more when he got home. Working weekends. Working the week of Christmas when he should have been off. Working out of town and leaving me alone with the kids.
He was working a lot, so I was working a lot too. It really stunk.
But often our best lessons come out of the most difficult times. So here are a few of my takeaways from our recent busy season:
As in: “My day was so much worse than yours because …” and then I expressed a litany of reasons why this was the case.
Even if I didn’t say those exact words, I was communicating in other ways that I had it so much harder than my husband did. And you know, whether I did or didn’t, it really doesn’t matter, because I’ve discovered that I don’t want sympathy from my husband.
What I DO want is encouragement and help, and he’s more apt to give me those things when I’m not always trying to “one-up”, and instead acknowledge that we’re both working hard, in different ways.
Attitude is Everything.
Proverbs 23:7a says “As a man thinks in his heart, so is he”. Entire books have been written on our attitudes, so I can’t do the topic justice in a single paragraph. But, what I’ve found myself mulling over every single day is this:
If I think I am miserable, then I AM miserable.
So perhaps a little attitude adjustment is in order.
Take Time to Connect.
Having young children can be difficult on a marriage in general, and busy season only exacerbates that. I realized that to avoid becoming just roommates, we needed to take whatever pockets of time we could find to just connect with each other.
I was often so beat from taking care of the kids all day that the last thing I wanted to do was stay up late to talk. But what I realized is that these times provided an opportunity to encourage each other. Busy season doesn’t last forever. It ends eventually and then we’ll have a slower season for a while, until it cycles around again. Just reminding each other of this somehow made it better.
How do you handle busy seasons in your own life?