Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Life is Unpredictable (Laurie)

Hello friends! I'm filling in for Laura, who just got back from an amazing writing workshop.

In trying to figure out what to write about today, I just kept coming back to the fact that the past few days have not gone as planned. At all. Not in any huge, life-changing kind of way. Just in lots of little ways that add up throughout the day.

Let's take Mother's Day, for instance. We went to a lovely church service, came home and had a nice lunch, then I got to open a few cards and a thoughtful gift. So far, so good. But I'd made a dinner reservation for that evening, which I could tell my husband wasn't too enthused about. To be fair, his concerns stemmed from the stress of trying to find foods that would be safe for my son who has allergies. I thought it through, and made a new plan. We would cancel the dinner reservation and instead have dinner at Noodles & Co, which we know has options that work for my son. Then, to make the day feel more special, we'd get ice cream nearby and enjoy it while walking on a beautiful lake front. Perfect.

But my sons were very tired, so they took really long naps. My husband, who is recovering from some kind of cold / sinus infection, also took a really long nap. Now, an afternoon where I knew I'd have tons of alone time would've been extremely welcome, but in this case I didn't quite know what to do with myself. By the time we went to dinner, it was 7:00. Dinner went fine, complete with my boys demonstrating some very creative dance moves out on the patio of the restaurant. But we hurried them along, hoping we'd still have time for ice cream. We made it to the ice cream shop, only to discover a sign declaring a risk of allergen cross-contamination across all their products (I had called ahead of time to check and they hadn't mentioned it). So, disappointed, we walked right back out again. But we did have a lovely walk along the pier, complete with a gorgeous sunset. And we stopped at a grocery store on the way home to pick up some ice cream, which we ate right in the comfort of our own kitchen :)

Yesterday, I planned to get my boys down for naps early so they'd be ready for their last day of swim lessons. Instead, we ended up taking my younger son to the doctor after lunch when he had a 103-degree fever and sores on his hands. Today, we're supposed to have storms all day, some of which could be severe, so I can't plan much of anything. Even while writing this post, I had 10+ distractions from my kids.

Life doesn't go as planned. You'd think I'd know that by now, but it's still hard for me to accept. I like to have a plan, to know what to expect, and to feel in control. But that's not how it works. It's hard, but it also can be a good thing. Because the unplanned leaves room for surprise blessings, such as the fun of having late-night ice cream at our kitchen table on Mother's Day. The unplanned also requires us to trust in God, because no matter how prepared we are things won't go as expected, and those are the moments we must rely on God to get us through and to have a better plan than ours. So I guess it's okay that I'm not in control, after all - I just have to keep working on not getting so stressed about it :)

How about you? Are you a planner, or do you like to take each day as it comes? Do you get anxious when things don't go according to plan? Do you have any strategies for embracing unpredictability?

Thanks for reading!

P.S. I hope all you fellow moms out there had a wonderful Mother's Day! Whether it went as planned or not :)


  1. Great post, Laurie! I can relate. I used to be a very organized planner -- than I had kids. I've become more go-with-the-flow, especially in regards to planning my days, because if I don't, I drive myself (and everyone around me) crazy. I keep reminding myself: "God's got this."

    1. Thanks for your comment, Jill! Planning definitely goes out the window a lot more often when kids are involved :) I'm glad to hear you've been able to become more go-with-the-flow, hopefully that will kick in for me one of these days, too!


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