Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Sacrifice (or The Price of a Calling)

I'm not going to lie, this past weekend was a rough one for me. It was a working weekend (every other one is). And like most working weekends I was feeling sorry for myself and bitter towards all those who were not in my situation. Then came the message at church on Sunday. Written just for me, I'm sure of it.

Point #1 "Always remember why you work"

Friday night I missed out on this.

Jadyn "graduated" from her Pre-K class, something that will only happen once in her little life. There were performances by each class and presentations of certificates by the teachers. Thanks to our handy Flip video camera I was able to watch most of it when I got home from work. But still, I wasn't there. I tried for weeks to get the night off but it just didn't happen. (I could have called in sick but that goes against sermon point #2 "Keep your integrity")

I wanted to be there to tell her how proud I was of her, to grab her up and give her a huge hug and kiss her on the cheek. To dance along with her and clap for her. Instead I pre-recorded a message for her and hugged and kissed her the next morning and asked her to teach me the fun dances. Not ideal, but we survived and made the best of it.

The next day it was a friends double birthday party. Here's what I missed then.

Seriously?  Look at that face! I laughed so hard I almost cried when Tim e-mailed me this picture. Not to mention the time with friends I missed out on (and delicious food!)

And then Sunday came, and not a day too soon.

Point #1 "Remember why you work"

OK, so why do I work? Why do I not stay full time at home? Why do I sacrifice time with my husband working opposite shifts than him, weekends and holidays? Why do I sacrifice time with friends and seemingly the rest of the world who works on a 9-5 schedule? Why do I sacrifice sleep (one of my most favorite things)? And the list goes on and on.

The answer that I was reminded of Sunday morning (whispered ever so quietly in my soul) was, "because I've called you to". No other reason. I work for Him. At home, I work for Him. At my job, I work for Him. He has called me to both.

Maybe the night that Jadyn was graduating something I said to one of my patients will be the thing down the road they will hold on to the next time they want to harm themselves, or the next time they want to get high, or the next time they feel the world closing in on them. If I don't love them, who will? Mental Illnesses are generally not part of the heralded diseases. You don't see many 5K for Schizophrenia or Bipolar Disorder. But for some reason God has shown me His heart for these people and has asked me to work with them. And so I do.

I admit that lately it has been begrudgingly. Which is why I probably needed the reminder "Remember why you work"

Really I have the best of both worlds, I get to work in an area God has gifted me in (psychiatry) and then I get to "work at" an area I am not so gifted in (motherhood), and I'm going to try to be thankful for it all. I'd like to think that the kids are getting the best of both worlds too, me in the morning and Tim at night.

And who am I kidding, for as much as I feel sorry for myself about the things I miss, there is so much more that I get to enjoy. (case in point: the very weekend before we had a family getaway in Chattanooga)

Rolling in the Grass

Rowing Partners

Whispering sweet nothings

Coming in for a hug landing! And I'm the landing strip

And let me tell you, that time is all the more appreciated. So I repent and remind myself "Why do I work?" The same reason I do anything, because of Love, so others may experience His glory. As my wise pastor Mike always says "It's not about you!" I'm not saying the bitterness and resentment won't happen again (like maybe on Father's Day or 4th of July, both of which I will be working) but I'll try to remember this simple truth and suck it up.

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