Such a dramatic title! But it’s every bit as real as you reading this blog right now.
If you’re anything like me, you go through your days with a feeling of anxiety at some point and for WHATEVER reason.
Between having 2 toddlers 20 months apart, a 10 year old who has middle child syndrome, a 12 year old stepdaughter you constantly worry about and a 20 year old who’s on the other side of the United States that you daily think about and regret the past few years of not being more involved (oh my gosh i’m running out of breath!) – anxiety is BOUND to happen.
So, how do we juggle all of these challenges and emotions in a graceful, loving way? Well, for me – I don’t. In fact, in this Let’s Get Real peek into Laura’s life, It’s a struggle for me every single day.
Despite recent circumstances in my life, I would say I’m doing fairly well. Friends who know my story have said things like, “I don’t know how you do it” and “You’re so amazing how you just keep going”.. and it’s only becauseof mygracious God that fills me with hope for tomorrow (and for the record, this circumstnce goes beyond having a blended family).
So what is this silent killer that serves as a common denominator in every situation?
It’s this silent killer that holds me back. It keeps me bound in stress, anxiety, and insecurity.
So how do I overcome myself? What can I do to change my perspective in the hard situations I face everyday? I try to enforce these 3 tactics against myself.
Combat The Silent Killer With
- Purpose-Driven Time – Carve out time with each child, go on dates, or just take a walk together. Something my 12 year-old stepdaughter loves to do is walk around our apartment complex. She THRIVES with love and a postive attitude when we’re finished – this strengthens our sometimes complicated relationship. My 10 year old LOVES talking about the latest Minecraft tactics, Lego playsets and whatever else I might seem completely detatched from, so I try to make the time to sit, listen and engage with her on her level. As far as my little guys, they’ve always got my attention. This is the age where it’s impossible to avoid them (who’s with me? ha!).
- Forgiveness – A blended family is primary battleground for offenses. No matter how much you love eachother, it’s going to be there. Recently, I spoke with our oldest (my stepdaughter) who is in college, and for a few years I haven’t been involved with her as much as I should have been. Having 2 kids within 2 years, her moving to Chico and us now moved to Tennesse, there has been lack of effort on my part. I had a hunch to apologize for my lack, and she forgave me. Turns out it’s something that’s been bothering her for awhile, but she never spoke up..Whether or not they’re your stepchildren or biological children, and regardless of their age – as a parent, be the example of unconditional love. It starts with forgiveness. Even if it’s asking forgiveness of something you meant to do, or not.
- Tame Your Tongue – I don’t know about you, but I am one that can be quick to anger. Sure, I avoid confrontation. But when it comes to the one’s that are closest to me, I can only be pushed so far. If I feel that a situation is unfair, I’m quick to defend without wisdom. Proverbs 15:1 says, “A gentle answer deflects anger, but harsh words make tempers flare.” Knowing that our family is a battleground – your words can either make or break the balance and peace in your home. I’ve learned that I need to wait until the emotions subside, and when an issue is to be addressed, it’s done properly, in order to correct and encourage, not destroy and build bitterness.
What are some ways that you conquer yourself? Do you find that at times, you can be your own worst enemy? If so, now you know that you’re not alone. Let us know how you go to war by commenting below! Also, don’t forget to subscribe to our blog for more insights on A Blended Masterpiece.