Doing It All

We all get caught up from time to time thinking we can do it all and then some.

Until we realize we can’t.

Oh sure, we can try and do it all. But something along the way something has to give. Something is not done as well as you would have hoped. You forget things. You lose things. You feel as though you are losing your mind because you are constantly going at full speed, all the time, knowing that if you keep all those balls juggling in the air you are bound to never lose your footing.

Until those balls come crashing down.

Maybe not all at once. Maybe one ball at a time.

I recently had a conversation with a mother of a friend. A grown friend married and with children. Small children. The friend worked full time, took care of four small children, planted a garden, enrolled the children in daycare camps, soccer, baseball, football, gymnastics, karate and who knows what else. Plus she has one still in diapers. (Oh dear gawd, hold me.)

She goes and goes and goes.

The mother of this woman said that her daughter can simply do it all. And she was proud of her daughter. I will admit, the admiration from a mother to a daughter I found endearing.

And I nodded and smiled and agreed.

Who am I to discount what this woman’s grown daughter can or cannot do?

But when I drove home and pondered it a bit I realized she can’t possibly do it all well.

We only have so many hours in the day and she is no different.

Maybe she doesn’t cook home-cooked meals from scratch. Maybe her house isn’t very clean. Maybe the baby has diaper rash. Maybe the garden is going to die from lack of attention or water. Maybe she will forget someone’s birthday gift at home and only realize it once she has driven across town.

And then again, maybe not.

But I have a firm belief, not in wanting and watching another mom take a fall from the pedestal of Do-It-All-ers. But because I just know that as women, mom, wives, whatever – we set ourselves up to fail sometimes. And maybe it isn’t a big deal that the almost four-year old is still in diapers because who has time to potty train? Or that the tomato plants are shriveling up and dying? Or that she ran into the store to buy a rotisserie chicken and then was halfway home when she realized she needed cupcakes for her daughter’s class the next day?

We can juggle and juggle all we want and convince ourselves (and our mother) that we can manage five hundred things at once but are we really? Can we possibly do all those things well without feeling frazzled, frustrated, and exhausted?

And more importantly, why do we feel the need to do so much?

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