I know I'm late in posting this, but honestly, I haven't quite finished the book yet. For the three people who actually read this blog on a semi-regular basis, you know that the past two weeks have been cake and cookie crazy, so that explains part of the delay here. For those who know me in REAL life, you know that I have a problem with procrastination, motivation, perfectionism, etc., etc., etc...and that pretty much explains the rest!!
I have a confession to make here...when I first started reading this book, I wasn't seeing my own pit at all. I mean, life around here has been fairly good lately. But I DID find myself thinking of other people I know who live in REALLY, REALLY DEEP Pits of their own, and I kept wanting to send them an anonymous copy of the book. (Yes, I know...that was NOT the point of SISTA Beth's book! I'm working on it. I'm working on it...)
So, as I get farther and farther into the book, I start to feel like maybe I am in a pit after all, but it is more of a literal pit...a messy, disorganized, dirty, house...and not so much a spiritual pit like Beth is talking about. And as I am again reprimanding myself for not seeing the "spiritual" message I'm supposed to be grasping, I had what Flylady calls a "lightbulb moment". Perhaps my physical pit is the result of a spiritual pit...hmmm. I really should explore this further...
In the meantime, I continued to read my favorite blogs, and I found myself really wanting to be a little more like Barb over at A Chelsea Morning, and a lot less like me! Fortunately, I was still reading Sista Beth's book, so I was able to stop myself before becoming "co-dependant" on poor Barb to get me out of my physical pit!
I'm teasing, of course, but at the same time, I really do HATE a dirty house, and I really was feeling like even if this wasn't the kind of pit Beth was referring to, perhaps it did need to be addressed. So, I began to look at the reasons why it is so hard for me to keep my house the way I want it...and here's what I came up with:
1) I have four kids. Yes, it would be MUCH easier to keep clean if there were no kids here to mess it up, but honestly, my house was messy BEFORE the kids too, so although they are a contributing factor to the current mess, they are obviously NOT the real problem--besides, I REALLY LIKE THEM, and would have a hard time giving them up! Hee-hee! So, I had to keep digging.
2) I have too much on my plate. I homeschool 3 of the 4 kids and try my best to keep the 4th out of trouble in the meantime. A full day of school for me is about 8 hours. I say for "me" because each child only has 1-3 hours worth of work on any given day, but I have to work with each of them individually, so I spend about 8 hours each day doing school. I also have the cake business. There are a couple of reasons why I keep up the cake business even though I'm crunched for time; I ENJOY it (most of the time). It is a nice break from the daily grind and a chance for me to be creative. And the extra money helps to pay for the kids' sports, etc.
3) I have health issues. It seems like I have been tired most of my life. The first time I recognized that this might be a result of my kidney problems was after I had surgery to put a temporary stint into my kidney to make it function better. While the stint was REALLY uncomfortable, the rest of me felt SO MUCH BETTER! I seemed to have more energy, and everything just didn't seem as hard. For years I thought I was just really lazy, and I would beat myself up about it. It was actually comforting to find out that there was something physically wrong with me.
So, yes, I do have some legitimate reasons for not keeping the sparkling house I wish I did. However, as my Prince Charming has pointed out (more times than I care to mention), I seem to do the things I WANT to do just fine...ouch! And it is true. I can force myself to get up and decorate a cake even when I don't feel well, but it is darn near IMPOSSIBLE to force myself to clean the house when I'm not feeling well! Partly because part of the "not feeling well" includes nausea, and looking at dirty toilets, floors, etc. just makes it worse! But seriously, I REALLY HATE a dirty house, so why isn't that motivation enough to get up and do something about it?
Guess what I discovered...I really do have a spiritual pit! It is not laziness, or poor health, or kids I am battling here, it is Satan. Why does Satan care if I have a dirty house or not? Because of who I am! I am the type of person who wants to have people over so we can eat homemade bread, cake, and cookies, drink Diet Coke, and watch really good movies together! I also want my house to be the one where all the neighborhood kids come to hang out. ('Cause I want to know what my kids are doing and with whom. And I want some say in how they do it!) He also knows that I beat myself up over my failures in this area. All I have ever wanted to be was a wife and mother, and I feel that if my house is dirty, I'm not doing a good job at either, and I feel defeated and miserable.
Every day that I live in a dirty house, is a day that I don't walk in God's victory, and a day that I don't live the life I believe God has called me to live. And THAT, my Sistas, is why Satan cares if my house is clean or dirty!
I have gotten in and out of this pit many, many times. Sometimes, I get pushed in (by kids, schedules, etc.). Sometimes, I slip in unaware. And sometimes I jump in because I just choose to. I have jumped out by working my tail off to impress someone who was coming over. I have climbed out slowly with the help of the Flylady. And I have made the pit, not quite so slimy with sheer determination. But I always know that eventually I'll be back in it. Now, I can see that there is a way out...and I'm going to have to read the rest of the book to find out what that is!!!
I'm not really sure if a personal revelation is what we were supposed to right in our Book Club post, but this is what I got out of what I've read in the book so far. I'm planning to spend the rest of today doing laundry, watching NASCAR, and finishing the book. I may be back with a follow-up post once I finish it, but for now...that's my first Bloggity Book Club post, and I can't wait to see what we are going to read next! For more Bloggity Book Club posts, check in over at Little Bits of Life.