What really matters | Overstuffed Overstuffed

Thursday, November 06, 2008

What really matters

About two weeks ago, I was having a really bad day. Not the kind where everything goes wrong (I had one of those, too), but the kind where you just feel rotten. To be honest, I was feeling rather sorry for myself. Feeling like nobody cared about me. Feeling like I wasn't good enough at anything I try to do. Feeling overwhelmed with all of the things I was trying to do. Feeling on the verge of tears nearly all day. Finally, those tears got the better of me and came pouring out along with a torrent of insecurities.

I don't often have days like this, and so my husband and my children don't usually know what to do with me when I do. Now that I look back on the day, I do realize how ridiculous I was being, and I appreciate even more the way my family handled it.

All three of my girls tiptoed into my bedroom where I was wallowing in self-pity and salt water. The two older ones brought me notes and pictures about what a wonderful mommy I am, and tenderly tried to find out just what exactly was wrong with me. Sophia, just came and laid down next to me and kept asking, "Wa happe mommy?" She slathered me with her adorable kisses and gave me lots and lots of hugs and pats on the back. Bria and Chloe also went into their room and began to sing hymns and primary songs. This is not something they normally do, and when asked why, they said because they wanted me to feel the Spirit.

Joel came in, too, and listened genuinely to my feelings. He has learned to do that, you know, instead of telling me how I should be feeling or giving me silly solutions. In the morning when I woke up, I found several pieces of paper outlining the things that he loves about me: Many of them were the things I was feeling down on myself for not doing well enough.

The whole experience just reminded me that what really matters is not how good I am at photography or which solo I was chosen for in the Messiah. It isn't how clean my house is or how wonderfully it is decorated. It isn't how skinny or pretty I am. It isn't how many comments are left on my blog or how many followers I have. No. What really matters is my little family, how I treat them and how I teach them.

Oh, how thankful I am for my wonderful husband and my precious daughters and for the opportunity they give me to make me a better person and to learn to focus on what's most important.

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24 comments :

  1. I'm glad you were able to realize what matters. As long as you are surrounded by people you love and people who love you, nothing else matters.

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  2. I'm glad you could see what truly matters. Sometimes it is hard to see when we are in a funk. (I am speaking from experience) I'm so glad your kids are so precious to sing to you, and what a great husband to tell you what he loves about you. Glad you're feeling better.

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  3. Sometimes it hard to remember those things because there is so much in the world that we worry about. It is hard to stay focused sometimes. It is great that we have family that reminds us every now and again what is really important.

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  4. K, can I just say I can't imagine my children EVER doing that. When I cry they just stare at me as though I have lost a limb. (Although I am not much of a crier) They also do the same thing when I'm gonna throw up at the sink. How sweet of them. Perhaps I do need some female-ness at our house.
    We'll find out in just 11 days. :)

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  5. And btw, everything you were thinking was wrong.
    You are just so silly.
    Glad you had a nice cry though, and personally -- I blame the diet. :)

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  6. Ok, you are not allowed to make ME cry this early in the AM!

    Gosh, what a sweet family you have. I must tell you though, you have always been one of the most beautiful people to me, inside and out. I always remember at BYU thinking how graceful and nice you were, and always wishing I could be like you and being thankful that you were my friend. :) Not to mention, you can get away with the red lipstick...which makes you stunningly beautiful. No wonder Joel fell to your charms so quickly. :)

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  7. I'm with Hilary and with Andersonland! Lara, the diet made you do it! No, j/k, I don't know, I just know what a wonderful daughter, person, wife, mother and friend you are! Maybe you just need a good shopping spree. J/K. But maybe you just need a good piece of chocolate, but don't you dare! I love you sweetie! Hang in there. Things always get better.

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  8. Lara, thanks for sharing this. I have been having a lot of those days lately. You are so good at so many things, but most importantly, you are obviously a wonderful mother. What sweet girls. I am so impressed that they not only knew how to invite the Spirit, but that they did it to help you feel better.

    For me, my pity parties start when I compare myself to other people too much. But the problem is, I am comparing myself to several other people's best talents, on their best days. No one person could possibly be good at everything all the time. Thanks for the reminder of what is really important.

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  9. We've all been there. Sounds like Joel's a keeper.

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  10. That was so sweet of your girls to sing to bring the spirit to you! You're right - your family is the most important.

    And I am always home. Really, just call and come over. I love visiting, and I have really good listening ears!

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  11. I've been feeling very similar lately, and I got a very similar letter from my husband too! Isn't it nice to hear how your man feels? Especially when it's spontaneous and genuine? And it's nice to get confirmation that your efforts aren't going unnoticed!

    I should comment more on your blog. I read it every day!

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  12. I'm glad you came out of it. Good job family!! Families are forever I'm so thankful for that. Love you and keep up the good work.

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  13. Your family sounds amazing. You have clearly done a great job with them.

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  14. I think you're wonderful for posting about one of your more insecure times. It makes me love you even more than I do! (because I think your photography and singing are amazing, and I can't imagine why you would feel insecure, but we all do, and when we admit it....it makes us closer?) :)

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  15. What a terrific family you have. I'm glad your feeling better. I'm pretty sure everyone has days like that, I know I do.

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  16. Amen! That is about all I can say!

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  17. I'm so sorry that you had a hard time. I really do know what that feels like...more than you could ever know. It's interesting how Satan can get to us. He doesn't challenge most of us with drugs, sex, or alcohol, but something like feeling insecure can easily be rationalized as your trying to improve. It's scary how well Satan knows how to get us.

    Like everyone else said, you are amazing. Not perfect, none of us are, but you do have many wonderful talents and I know you're working to improve the areas that are weaker. That's what really matters.

    I love you!

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  18. It's nice to know that I'm not the only one that has those days!!! Aren't children wonderful? ... when I'm having a rough day, Laci will ask me numerous times if I'm happy and gives me countless hugs and kisses (which says a lot because she's not my affectionate child). It's amazing how intuitive our chilren are, isn't it?

    Next time I'm having a bad day, can you send Joel over to teach Jason a lesson or two? :)

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  19. Oh my gosh -- can you please have Joel come talk to Dustin about how to do that? He has STILL not learned -- and I speak from experience since last night I had a major freak out.

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  20. great story, I get days like that and am taking comfort in knowing I am not the only one. Glad to see that your family is so in tune to your emotions and can help ease you through the blues... my daughter is wonderful with it, my son, well-he is the cause of most of my blues at the moment...and hubby, well he does the best he can but being a different culture, it is hard sometimes.

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  21. You are an AWESOME friend, and a GREAT listener. I'm so glad we got to know each other and were able to spend so much time walking and talking. That always meant a lot to me!

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  22. What a blessed woman you are, Lara! And what a lovely, wonderful family you have! (As if we all didn't realize that already!) Glad your "funk" is over with!

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  23. It's so hard to find the perspective some days. We're only human and we feel sorry for ourselves and then guilty so often.

    But it never changes that we're totally in love with our families.

    Beautiful post!

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  24. Well this one made me cry. What a blessing to be surrounded by a loving, thoughtful (at least in times of distress) family! I love how my own children are so concerned when I let the fountains gush. Lana without fail will come and hug and kiss me, because kisses make everything better. I always feel bad that the kisses don't just sweep away all of the emotion. Sometimes we just have to let it all out with a good cry.

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