This period of rest and recuperation seems to be drawing gradually to a gentle close. Well not a close so much, but I have been having less and less of the nausea and I seem able to do more things now without being exhausted, which is rather nice, to say the least. And on top of that it seems God is calling me into something new and whilst I am a bit worried about getting ill again and doing too much too soon, I know I need to take this leap and trust Him completely. And anyway, what is life without a few risks eh? dull dull dull…
So as I begin to move on, I have been reflecting about what I have learned over this time. If I am not going to make the same mistakes again then I really need to heed those lessons. These are my pearls of wisdom, particularly for women but they could mostly apply to men too! (although perhaps not no.9..):
1. Life should come in this order: God/Family, Church, work, other.
2. If you are tired, take a rest. Even if that is just 5 minutes sit down with a cup of tea.
3. Rest does not mean blogging/reading/housework etc. What it does mean is watching a movie,having a bath or some quiet time (for me this is true, it may be different for each of us. But I found it amazingly useful to actually think about how I relax and what I truly find restful. It was not what I first thought)
4. My relationship with God has grown hugely over this time. In order to keep that as a priority I need to take some time each day to seek Him. I think this is worthwhile for all Christians. After all how we can expect to hear from Him if we don’t even give Him time to listen?
5. Just say NO! Sometimes we have to, (I have to), say ‘no’. Saying no to a request does not make you a bad Christian, it makes you a sensible Christian and far more useful in the long run. Get over the guilt !
6. Similar to point 5, thinking of ones self sometimes, does not make one selfish.
7. You are not superwoman. Intelligent women often fall foul of this. We live in a world where women ‘who can’ are expected to work, be a mum and a wife and a host of other stuff all in one, and then become ‘More magazine Supermum of the year’. This ideal is, frankly, a pile of crap. We cannot do everything, something will have to give somewhere. And I know for me this was my health, and I’m not suggesting everyone who does all of the above will get ill, but we get affected in different ways: relationships with family/friends/temperament etc.
8. Ask for help. If you are overburdened or need help – ask for it. Loving friends would be happy to help out a friend in need without requiring payback. Those who don’t, either have very good reasons for not doing so, or are not your friend. If need be ask again or someone else. Do not try to be the Superwoman from no.7
9. Stop trying to be a man. Sounds stupid but so many women I know try to be all things and all roles. We do not have to be macho to prove ourselves. Women can be strong and solid without resorting to acting like a man. We have great characterisitcs and strengths that most men do not. Use them, rather then trying to take on the mens ones. And for goodness sake if its ‘that time of the month’ do not feel bad for bursting into tears at the school gate (which of course I have never ever done… ;) ) or some other nonsense. Hormones make us who we are!!
10. TRUST. After all God has a plan to prosper us and not harm us. Trsut in Him to do that, whatever crap life throws at you.