As a young adult fresh out of college I always thought my plan for success and life's journey was summed up in obtaining the ultimate executive position in my field and earning well into six figures by the time I was thirty. But after experiencing life and maturing as a Christian woman, I later realized that the key to my success is summed up in Gods purpose for my life.
Recently, I read a book to my daughter called "When God Made You" and while reading this book to her I was truly touched by Gods word, and his promise. See, it is just recently at 36 years old that I realized that I am uniquely made. Every hair on my head and divine feature on my body has been created by my father. At 33 I discovered what I believe to be my ultimate purpose and that is to be a mother. Being a mother is no small job and truly it is a huge responsibility. My children are my gift and I owe it to my provider to take care of them and Shepard them along the way. Ironically, I was a mother well before 33, but I didn’t realize it was my life’s purpose until I had my second child.
After working aggressively to climb the corporate ladder like many of us do, I got married at 28 and was gifted with a 10 year old son that I had the opportunity to build a bond with over an 8 year period before marriage. Raising him full-time with my husband while commuting back and forth from Chicago to Deerfield, IL for work seemed like no big deal at the time. Every move I made from cooking, cleaning and chauffeuring to doing homework felt effortless until five years later when I had my daughter while holding a leadership position. After being on maternity leave for 6 months I was afraid to return to work, not because I was devastated to leave my child (she was in good hands) but, because I was afraid to fail. My mom, Claire Huxtable and the Pioneer Woman have all set the bar so high and I was intimated. How could I be successful at work, plan for my son’s last year of high school (college applications, prom and graduation), care for my new baby girl and be an amazing wife? Well there’s no playbook for this thing called womanhood. But there are some well known books to “guide” you along the way like What to Expect When You’re Expecting and The Power of a Praying Wife, but the only real roadmap to your life and all that it entails is purpose and the plan that God has for you.
Yes, I do believe that my life has more purpose than that of being a mother but that is my top priority.
So you ask, how do I juggle it all? I don’t- It’s God grace, his strength and his mercy that carries me through. Even now, It is literally 11:36pm, I finished work around 8pm, washed and combed my daughters hair for picture day and I am wrapping up the night with all you fly girls striving to balance work and home life.
I enjoy being a working mom because I have the opportunity to be an independent thinker and use my creativity outside the home. However, work life balance is important to me. So tonight is rare. I don’t usually work til 8pm. I am generally out of the office by 5:30 and home by 6pm. I believe in having time off for the holidays, leisure summer days and just because days. I believe in making time to workout three times a week. I try to cook 4 days a week and like many African -American families I take pride in making a nice Sunday dinner. But the truth is, I AM A WOMAN and I AM HUMAN. My life isn’t always this balanced, but I strive for the best and recently, I have learned to compromise with myself. Yes, myself. I have found that I can be my own worst critic so I have learned to take the pressure off of myself and trash the cape (Mines was red. What color is yours?) by making time for myself and my family.
And here’s how:
Every morning I make time to spend with my father. This time is generally spent in prayer, reading a spiritual book, and/ or writing in my journal. I allow myself no less than 20 minutes, but it is good practice to spend 30 minutes minimum. If for some reason my morning get’s out of hand. I make sure I do it before bed.
Like most moms, I don’t have a lot of time during the week to watch television but, I do record a couple of my favorite shows and watch them on the weekend when I am free to catch up. Sometimes, I designate a Saturday to myself, I say no to invites, no to shopping and just relax, watch movies and veg out with my family.
In my twenties, this was just another appointment, but nearly 15 years later I intentionally make time for: nails, hair, exercise, ice cream and Hallmark movies – lol. My laughs, pretty nails, fabulous hair and stress free spirit benefits the world I live in and the people I serve so it’s a must that I take care of myself. 😊
Ladies!!! Date nights are a part of the work life balance, but also keeps down the madness. I have learned that date night is not all about going out for drinks and dinner but often just dedicated quite time for you and your hubby. Time for talking, laughter and passion. Make it happen. As often as possible.
A true rarity I must admit but when I make the time I enjoy hanging with my friends. I have friends that live all over the nation let alone the Chicagoland area. Sometimes, I have to face-time my friend in Dallas just to remind her that I am always thinking of her and value our friendship. Other times, I have coffee, lunch or a playdate with other friends that are local. The point is, we can not do it all but, when you can spend time with a friend. Laughter and love is another level of wellness that we all need. My friends always make me feel better.
So, that’s me – I am imperfectly made in the world, but perfectly made in God’s image and I take care of my family and handle my business because he prepared me for it all. Women were made for this and I stand tall knowing that God trusted me with some of his most precious cargo and mission driven plans.
I am connected to God, he is within me and I am at peace.
Sabrina is an author, wife, mother, chef and amazing friend. Professionally she is a brand expert and marketing instructor.
To know her is to absolutely love her.