Picture it! Monday before Mother’s day. I’m feeling SO good about getting ready to buy and mail my Mother’s Day cards and gifts. A whole week to get them there. Not just on time, but actually early! Nothing’s been on time since the Peanut was born…

Related: The ORIGINAL Mother's Day for the Supermom post

I’ve planned adequately for purchase, wrapping, and mailing along the way to depart on my next trip, and all is good.

Then it hits me! All of my household goods (including the address book) are stuffed in a box in another state. Yes, I know. Mother’s Day, Birthdays, and Christmas all come at the same time each year. In spite of this military move, I really should have planned better to acknowledge my loved ones by sending them a token of love at the appointed time. Then I figured there was little I could do to change the situation, and decided to encourage myself with a little shopping. It worked. I wonder if that’s because shopping is a cure-all for every disappointment, or (more likely) because it’s been about a year since I shopped real good and I now I had a precious two hours all to myself 

I’ve been thinking a lot about Mother’s day, because it was Mother’s day last year when I wrote the essay, “Mother's Day for the Supermom.” Here, I publicly vowed to stop juggling (though not really “doing”) a million different things that brought me no real, lasting joy, and just focus on those key people and activities which had the most impact on myself and those I love.

So where do I stand a year later? Well… I’m still crazy busy, but I spend more time with friends and family- road trips, museums, memorials. A little Phase-10 at the kitchen table and some movies here and there. I’ve minimized the real estate investing and maximized my opportunities to travel for the gospel. I shut down the webhosting business, turned the boutique over to an assistant, cut out any volunteering that was causing a loss in other areas of my life, and decided to focus on my career. I’ve always loved my “day job,” and “the pay ain’t bad either!” I was shocked at how much of myself I was wasting once I calculated the cost of spending my energy. “They” really can exist/function without you, when you give them no choice.

I even resigned my position on the board of directors of the Maryland Association of Professional Foreclosure Consultants, because I quickly saw that helping other people through their time of need would come at the expense of nurturing my new family. I hated to quit, but hated more the look on my son’s face when his father and I continually ignored him so we could try to pull some client through the sub prime crisis. Foreclosures will always be there. My son won’t be a toddler forever.

I’ve also squelched many of the “great ideas” bouncing around in that 40-pound brain. Sure, I still write them down for later consideration, but you know what I’ve noticed? Most of these great ideas are really just a tool of the deceiver to distract us from focusing on those activities that will ensure our salvation, solidify our families, and bring us financial independence.

And at the end of the day, what really matters? When we are old, with broken and beaten bodies, will we look back on our youth and celebrate the deals we accomplished and the empires we built? The negotiations we won? The places we were invited? The crowd we ran with? The cars we drove? Or will we weep for the time lost with our children, nieces, nephews, grandkids…? The ages that pass so quickly and can never be recovered? The strength we had but used up on frivolous pursuits, because we figured we’d get around to resting once we “arrived.”

I can’t speak for anyone else, but I’ve tried to live this past year with no regrets about how I treat my son, my husband, and (especially) myself. I’ve taken time to stop multi-tasking (most of the time) and really listen to people. And I’m enjoying the marvelous life God has given me.

So I wish you all a happy Mother’s Day, and hope that this next year will be your most fabulous yet!
Love,

Janine