One of the things I’m most self-conscious about is the condition of my home. I always tell Glen our home is a reflection of me NOT you! When people walk into our house, they’re more likely to think “Geese Yvette! Clean up lately?!?!” than they are to think “Wow Glen! What a mess!” I feel like some will read that last sentence and brush it off as it’s all in my head, but I’m convinced it’s not. I know we’re supposedly evolving as a society, but there are still certain gender roles that exist in many of our minds whether or not we’re willing to admit it. Thankfully my husband does not completely rely on me to cook and clean on top of everything else I have going on, but there’s still an instinctual part of me that wishes I could be on top of that as well as fulfill all of my other responsibilities. I mean I’m a woman. That’s what I’m supposed to do, right?! Riiiiiight…
This brings me to a conversation I recently had with another woman. She was on her way to our house to watch the boys, so Glen & I could go to an engagement without having to take the kids. I had gotten home from work & we had to leave an hour later I think. The house was a mess and I just didn’t have enough energy to make my house look presentable, so the following text went out…
I mean we don’t have rodents crawling around on the floor or anything. It’s mostly things not returned to their rightful place and dishes piled up and laundry that remains unfolded and children who’ve undone the little bit of tidiness we managed to maintain and us not picking up behind ourselves. You know… Life! Real life. Anyway, the beautiful woman that was coming to hang out with the boys shared with me something that literally changed my perspective about it all. She phrased it in such a way that actually made me feel like I was serving her in that moment. The essence of what she said was…
It’s really ok. If your house was clean, then you’d be giving me unrealistic expectations of what life is like as a married working mother of two.
This conversation happened so long ago, so if you’re the person who I was in conversation with I apologize if I didn’t get it exactly the way you said it but I appreciate your wisdom in that moment. The conversation continued and I began to reflect on the fact that a lot of the stress and pressure I feel has to do with expectations that I have of myself. Furthermore, I began to wonder how these expectations manifested themselves in my heart/mind. Then I began to reflect on how annoyed I sometimes get with people excusing the fact that I’m a slacker… “Oh Yvette, you’re working full time.” Or “You have two little ones and one on the way.” I feel like a lot of times I allow others and myself to excuse away the fact that my life is a mess. I mean it’s literally a mess. At home things are out of place. At work my desk is an organized mess. In my car I’m drowning in half full water bottles. In my mind I’m sorting through all the things I need to get done. In my relationships I’m wishing there was more time for quality time. There’s sooooo much!
I believe we as women sometimes put so much pressure on ourselves to ‘have it altogether.’ Let me be the first to announce that I do not have it all together. I struggle with insecurities as a wife, mother, teacher, friend, daughter & human being in general. However, I believe it’s time to revamp my expectations of self. What is it that God has called me to? Who is it that God has called me to be? Am I fully and completely living my life as unto God? Am I about my Father’s business? Rather than comparing myself to the highlight reels that social media so kindly exposes me to of other women who seem like they’ve figured it out, what if I compared myself to the expectations that God has for me???
The truth is when I step outside of myself I can see the beauty that exists in the mess. I love my husband and he loves me. We have two healthy boys who have no care in the world, and a healthy baby growing inside of me. We have a roof over our heads. We have a supportive and loving family. We have friends who have become family, and we serve a God that continues to provide outside of our earthly scope of what provision looks like. Although the physical realm of my life is a mess, I am affirmed that “I am His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that I should walk in them.” [Ephesians 2:10] I choose to walk in them! Let’s be real it’s a moment to moment decision to set aside unrealistic expectations, but it’s a decision that’s worthwhile!
A Beautiful Mess
Hey, hey! I'm Yvette!
I'm a thirty-four year old wife, mother of four, podcast host, and writer from San Diego, California. I'm a former math teacher turned stay-at-home parent and influencer with the unique opportunity to bring women into community with one another and encourage them in their seasons of life through my podcast, Yvette, Unplugged and my online community, Women, Unplugged.
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