~By Sharon Czerwien
Do you ever feel 100% inadequate to function at some core task? Experiencing this can be depleting and humbling and…well, I'll stop there.
In early January, my family flew to the Midwest. Due to a flare-up week with my health condition, I was running on fumes as we prepared for our airport travel day.
My doctor said that adrenaline should carry me through the airport, but honestly, as I was dropping physically, it was only by the grace of God that we made it to Tulsa’s airport where my dad would pick us up and drive us to our final destination—my home turf in Missouri!
My body gave me all kinds of red flags while walking through security early that morning. It was figurately hooting and hollering as we went every literal step through each airport.
Inadequate Momma Feelings
Here is the real crux of my “pain” on that travel day, though. All three examples regard my inadequate momma feelings:
1. After security, we walked by a fun (though small) kids’ area. It was imperative, though, that we keep walking to find our near-enough gate. All I wanted to do was sit down and elevate my compression-socked legs on my carry-on roller bag. In the past, I would have jumped on the chance to whisk my children back to the kid area for them to play a bit while waiting. Not that day, though. Nope, I had to protect my body, which meant I had this gut punch that there were now times I could not be the same mom I once was.
2. I was zero fun on the two flights we had that day. My kiddos and I had proactively packed all kinds of fun things to do together on the plane. On the flights, though, all I could do was either eat the salty snacks that help my health condition not spike as much or simply close my eyes. While my eyes were shut, I felt terrible for not having the promised fun with my kids. This example was just another one that made me feel lousy that I could not always be the mom I once was.
3. I probably seemed so uninvolved and detached from my kiddos during the flights. My husband had told the kids to not ask momma questions on the airplanes. I had to completely rest my nervous system, on the second flight especially. I truly kept my eyes closed 90% of that flight. Oh my, the momma guilt, though! On a different note, my ears were working just fine. I heard mommas all around being GOOD moms! There was the momma with a lap child diagonally back to my right. She was doting on the little one and teaching the child seemingly new vocabulary about the airplane, etc. There was the momma behind me who played games with her teenage child and talked and played with her the WHOLE plane ride. Yet, there I was…a momma whose kids weren’t able to ask her questions and who did not even have the strength to look for the UNO cards buried somewhere in the bag. There was one point towards the end of the last flight that I had tears coming out of my closed eyes. I felt completely inadequate as a momma. Thankfully, the plane’s lights were dim at that moment in time.
I was in survival mode, just hoping and praying that I could rest my nervous system enough so that I could walk off the plane instead of having a physical crash. However, part of that vital rest meant I could not be the momma I wanted to be, especially when surrounded by the other two moms I wanted to be like!
Inadequate, I was! I was helpless with things completely beyond my control!
Thankfully, God placed the following verses on my heart at some point on the second flight. The Apostle Paul wrote this about the thorn in his flesh…
Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” (2 Corinthians 12:8-9)
Tens of thousands of feet up in the air (and it took a long while to get to this mental point!), I rested in the fact that I did not have to be Super Mom on that travel day. God and HIS plan and HIS strength were all-sufficient.
If I had physically crashed, would God’s power have been just as present!? YES! I am convinced that part of God’s strength-providing power gives us the strength to go through the trial.
So, did I feel like a terrible mom that day??? Yep, I sure did! Yet, the day was also a great reminder of where and in Whom I should rest my weary body.
On an incredibly exciting note to me…
By the time we landed in Tulsa, my nervous system kicked back in enough for me to be more alert with the family in the vehicle ride back to my home town.
Plus, on the travel day(s) home, I was not flaring at all with my health! I had very healthy days in the airports. I played that game of UNO (my son only wanted to play ONCE!). I did not close my eyes or need a nap on any airplane, and I even answered questions!
God can be praised and trusted in the bad days and the good! Of course, it is always easier said than done. We can be extra thankful, though, when God puts the perfect verse in our hearts when we are in survival mode!
Remember, inadequacies are okay.