It's All About Balance
During my 12-week maternity leave, the first two weeks were a time of great adjustment; when people say “babies are a lot of work,” they aren’t kidding. Then I went through a time when I was craving more adult interaction and even going back to my day job. I loved all of the time I was able to spend with my daughter, but I needed to get used to being home all day! As soon as I was settling in and really enjoying my new schedule, maternity leave was over and it was back to my job.
Fortunately, I am able to balance working part-time and staying home to raise my daughter. It fits me and my family well, and I’m happy for the opportunity to balance in this way. Since that life-changing month of April, I’ve had some different thoughts about “work.” I agree that “babies are a lot of work.” My “days off” from my day job are usually filled with household chores and the many tasks necessary for taking care of an infant. And my career “work” most certainly fits the regular definition. It’s harder to draw lines between when I’m “working” and not working, and I don’t think it is necessary to do so – as long as one is striving for balance in all areas in life. That’s another subject in itself. St. Josemaria Escriva, founder of Opus Dei, an organization that promotes bringing God info everyday life and using ordinary tasks as a path to holiness, said, “Persevere in the exact fulfillment of the obligation of the moment. That work – humble, monotonous, small – is prayer expressed in action, which prepares you to receive the grace of that other work – great and broad and deep – of which you dream” (The Way, no. 825).
Praise God that he gives us countless ordinary tasks as a way to pray and love Him! Laundry and cooking and cleaning must be done, so I’m grateful that I can welcome the Lord into these tasks. We must provide for our families; how wonderful that as we work for pay at our jobs, we are working to better the kingdom of God in varied ways, no matter the specific duties. As we desire to serve God, let’s praise him that he blesses our “humble, monotonous, small” work. Let’s thank him for his graces and welcome him again into our lives, which is exactly where he desires to be.