How in the world can the house still be a wreck after I spent the entire day cleaning it?
I do invisible work.
I spent the day wiping baseboards, fixing the broken sweeper, and doing the never-ending laundry. I spent an hour playing cars across the living room floor investing in intentional time with my kids.
I responded to correspondence, paid bills, and connected with family.
I let my toddler eat his lunch while I caught up on the dishes that somehow seem to manifest themselves. I skipped my own lunch and just ate the leftovers off the toddler plate before I returned to housework.
I wiped irrational tears, coaxed a potty-training toddler to sit on the potty, and somewhere along the way, I took a shower.
In the last few minutes of naptime, I took a break to watch some television before the toddler woke up and the big kids had to be picked up from school.
My version of a lunch break.
Promptly upon picking up the big kids, we spent three hours running errands for the kids’ activities.
Running out of steam, I grabbed a pizza at the big box store and fed my kids on the go. I finally made it back home with all of the kids in tow. Bedtime comes really fast some days.
I feel invisible.
When my husband and I sat down after baths, pajamas, bedtime stories, requests for drinks, and endless goodnight kisses, I collapsed exhausted.
Sheepishly he asked, “Why was the house such a wreck when I got home?”
I felt meaningless and invisible. He didn’t intend to make me feel that way, and when I looked around, I knew exactly what he was talking about.
My husband is a rock star dad, a doting husband, and a faithful leader of our home.
However, at that moment, I realized how invisible my service to my family sometimes is.
I had spent the entire day cleaning and taking care of household tasks. I had mopped, and vacuumed, and cleaned moldings. I had put away laundry and replaced rogue toothbrushes.
However, while I had been doing all of my tasks, my toddler had been given carte blanche to play in the family room and small cars covered the floor. It was the only room I had neglected knowing full well that the endeavor would be futile during waking hours.
The scattered car mess across the floor was the “wreck” my husband referred to.
The cobwebs had been cleared from the corners, the laundry had been placed in the drawers, and the old takeout containers had been cleared. Those jobs were invisible.
I see the invisible mommy.
Sometimes we mommies just want to be seen. We want to know the hours and efforts and sweat and tears were noticed.
We mommies make so many things happen that are invisible.
If you are a mommy who has spent the entire day cleaning, organizing, sorting, and running the errands that have to get done, I see you. I am you.
If you spent the entire afternoon doing the dishes while your toddler destroyed the living room, I see you. I am you!
If you passed an entire evening getting the kids fitted for school gear or shoes and couldn’t get dinner on the table, I see you. I am you!
A day with nothing to show for it because you whisked the evidence away. A vacuum of tasks and jobs.
Even though you don’t serve your family to check some sort of box, these invisible jobs can make you feel insignificant.
While those tasks do not define you, you are a constant servant to your family, and the reality is it’s a bit of a thankless job.
Sometimes they don’t even notice. And, sometimes they even ask why you didn’t do more.
You rise early, wake in the night, sacrifice your body, and even skip meals just to care for your wonderful family.
It’s OK sometimes to just be a little tired and maybe even a little hurt.
However, you are seen. Your work is meaningful. Your work is Kingdom work. Those jobs are jewels-in-your-crown jobs.
Your family sees you, your attitude, your presence, your intention, and your love. Even if they don’t see the lack of laundry or notice the refrigerator is never empty, they love you.
Your kids notice you. Your husband notices you. Your Father notices you.
Although those little jobs, tasks, and errands might be invisible, you, dear mommy, are not.
Encourage one another.