I’m the Lobster

by Hallie @ Moxie Wife on April 28, 2014

Do you know who doesn’t win at blogging?

This girl.

You don’t even know how in awe I am of all of you who, amidst the craziness of daily life, still manage to visit your beautiful virtual homes away from home to share your hearts. I smile each time you post your wonderful updates and between scrubbing the pots and the pans, I read your words.

When I can, I try to dash off a comment but I have this weird problem where I want to say just the right thing. I want to perfectly convey to you just how much you inspire me. You girls are responsible for at least 50% of my joy each day. But when the right words prove elusive (thank you Charlie-no-sleep), I usually just close my laptop in frustration and return to the suds.

 

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I think maybe I’m just not good at online communication (which is why I am so excited about meeting so many of you in person at Edel!). I wish I was. Sometimes I’m envious of the sweet bonds so many of you have formed, and I worry that I’m failing to offer the same loving kindness (I know I am) but I do hope you know that I think the world of all of you. I just have a social media anti-charism. When things get chaotic on the home front, Moxie Wife collects dust. Basically I fail at Blogging with Discipline 101. Can you even imagine how neglected she would be without Five Favorites?!?

This winter was challenging. We were visited by Scarlet Fever, a stomach flu, and more everyday colds than I care to count. There was a tragic death in the family. I took multiple solo-parent trips by air which, though I love traveling, aren’t terribly relaxing with an infant in arms. Oh, and that infant in arms? I don’t know if I mentioned this (okay, I did), but he never slept.

It’s tempting to look back on this past winter, shake my fist, and say “Good riddance to bad rubbish!” I mean, it was seriously brutal at times. But as crazy as it may sound, and as happy as I am to welcome the reprieve of springtime, when I look back upon the last few months I’m filled with silly joy and overflowing gratitude.

Not because I’m a “so-holy*I-love-suffering*bring-on-the-pain” kind of gal (hahaha), but because this winter was revealing. In a good way. Now that I’m standing on the outskirts of that difficult season, I can look back at our experience, consider the way we handled the challenges we faced, and I can see all sorts of fruit. Delicious, life-giving fruit that’s been ripening for years.

Those fruits like to hide, don’t they? When you’re struggling mightily — arguing with your spouse, barking at your children, rolling your eyes at perfect strangers, (stubbing your toe and cursing the door jam, anyone?) — it can all feel so pointless.

 

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I can’t tell you how many times I have thought, “This would be such a great opportunity for sanctification if only I’d lean in to it a bit.”

The other day it hit me that I’m kind of like a lobster in a lobster pot.

At first, the steam feels kind of nice. “Thank you, Lord, for all these little crosses! I feel the goodness of your mercy! Your wish is my command!”

But then he turns up the heat a little and I’m all, “Stop, stop!!! You’re killing me! I’m dyiiiiing!”

And I do die, just like the lobster. Only there’s that small Resurrection thing that we human gets to take advantage of so, after all the dying (to self), I’m brought back to life!

Perhaps fittingly, it being Easter and all, I can see all this so clearly right now.

As he sometimes does, God has lifted the lid of the lobster pot a bit. The sun is shining through and he is saying, “Do you see now? Do you see how all of the pain and suffering has made you more tender? I didn’t need you to lean in. I just needed you to stay in the pot. And you did. (Albeit with a bit more thrashing than the average lobster.)”

 

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I’m not patting my back as I say this. Truly, I’m not. I’m more marveling at God’s goodness. I did nothing (you have no idea the degree to which I can do nothing) to bring this about and still he did his thing.

Don’t get me wrong, had you peeked into the windows of my home these past few months, you probably wouldn’t have seen a serene woman down on her knees. But you might have seen a wife who poured out a bit more love, a mother who showed a little more patience, and a woman who faced uncertainty with slightly more trust than she would have five years ago.

Of course, God knows that this lobster is far (so, so far) from perfectly tender. And so I know that he’s about to put me right back into the pot. That’s how these reprieves always go. They give you just enough time to breathe deep, recharge your batteries, and prepare for the next challenge. And that’s actually okay with me. With a little trepidation and as much faith as I can muster, I say bring it on…

Another day, another lobster pot.

 

I hope you are all having a beautiful, joy-filled Easter!

 ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

{I’d love to connect with you on Facebook ~ Twitter ~ Instagram ~ or Pinterest!}

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{ 28 comments… read them below or add one }

Melissa April 28, 2014 at 10:07 am

Timely, Hallie! And even with a hopeful ending.and re-beginning… :)

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Elise @ in endless song April 28, 2014 at 10:16 am

This was just what I needed to read this morning. Thank you, Hallie.
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Cari April 28, 2014 at 10:27 am

I love this. I love it because I’m going to think of this next time I’ve come up for air, and all I think is, “Well, THERE was another chance for sanctification that I squandered because I didn’t cooperate”. I love the idea of me as the lobster, and even though I’m thrashing and wailing and waving my weird claw hands, I’m still getting more tender, despite my lack of cooperation.

Thank you.
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Bonnie April 28, 2014 at 10:52 am

Ahhh, God bless you, Hallie.
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Rachel Parker April 28, 2014 at 11:39 am

Yep. We’ve all been the lobster. And even if it doesn’t feel good when you’re in the thick of it, the crazy can help you grow as a person if you let it.
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Agnes @ Restless Until I Rest in Thee April 28, 2014 at 12:47 pm

You are so very inspiring to me Hallie…when you write something…it hits me like an arrow straight in the heart and I’m forced to think about how I should improve myself and be a better wife/woman. Thanks for that!!!
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Amy @ Consecrated Housewife April 28, 2014 at 1:10 pm

Oh, love the lobster analogy. Now when the going gets rough around here I’m going to think, “lobster, cook like a lobster”. Haha! Seriously, great post, something to chew on and mull over a bit.
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Stephanie K April 28, 2014 at 1:27 pm

Such a good analogy! I love it. And I hear ya on the social media anti-charism. I constantly wonder how these ladies manage to do it all and form such great online friendships to boot!

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Blythe April 28, 2014 at 1:29 pm

I love this…. You don’t need to lean in, you just need to stay on the pot. Amen, hallelujah.

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Kristen Bright April 28, 2014 at 11:51 pm

That’s *in* the pot, Blythe! Love ya! -kristen :)

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Julia April 28, 2014 at 1:38 pm

Thank you for sharing this reflection. I’m so glad I found your blog over the past year. Like others, I find your writing quite inspiring. As a mama of two under four (so far), I often need to be reminded that all of life’s crazy, difficult, and unforeseen challenges offer the opportunity to receive God’s grace (as opposed to raising my voice and shaking my fists at the universe, which is usually my first reaction).

Also, I’m so happy for you and your brood that you’ve made your way through what I felt was the longest winter ever. Happy Easter and enjoy the spring!
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Sarah April 28, 2014 at 1:40 pm

I’m so glad that I clicked on over here today to read. I really needed this one and you’ve given me lots to contemplate for this week. I couldn’t help but start to cry as I read it. As I did, one toddler closed her own arm in the drawer and started crying while the other screamed “What happened? What happened?” in the loudest voice possible.
Right now staying in the pot is really, really hard. I needed the reminder of the lobster and of the sanctification. Thank you.

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Theresa @ HappyAlmostHomemaker April 28, 2014 at 5:52 pm

You know how reading this post made me feel? Seriously deep-down relieved. It’s good to hear that in the occasional battle of blog vs. life, blog doesn’t always win. And that it’s ok to be overwhelmed and to realize that the only way you’re staying in the pot is to hold on tight. So thanks for that. :) My heart feels a little lighter, and I didn’t even know it was so heavy.
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Amy April 28, 2014 at 6:19 pm

I know exactly what you mean about commenting on other people’s blogs, except I’m not sure I have sleep deprivation to blame it on. I read something that resonates so deeply with me, I don’t even know how to put it into words, so I usually end up just writing some version of “This is great! I really needed this! Thanks!” all the while thinking “I sound completely lame.”

So this is great, I really needed it, thanks, and all that. :-)
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Jenna@CallHerHappy April 28, 2014 at 8:31 pm

This is beautiful – per usual.

Also, I think I speak for all of us when I say that even if you feel like you aren’t communicating well enough, we all feel your love. You’re doing something right! xxoo
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Cate April 28, 2014 at 9:34 pm

Thank you for this, Hallie. It is something I needed to read right now (amidst a ridiculous amount of my own thrashing about). May your reprieve be long and your next pot more hot-springs, less rolling-boil. xo

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Micaela @ California to Korea April 28, 2014 at 10:14 pm

“I just needed you to stay in the pot. And you did.” That line, right there. That’s where I burst into tears. Love this whole gosh darn thing, Hallie.
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Kelli April 29, 2014 at 5:49 am

Thank you for sharing this! I read it about an hour ago and as I nurse my baby (who hardly sleeps too) I keep thinking about it and feeling encouraged! I related with so much of it :)

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Amy April 29, 2014 at 7:32 am

Oh, I love this. I feel the same way about posting comments for others. I’m terrible at it :(

And the lobster part? Yes! I too have had a trying winter (flu, pneumonia, pink eye, three different stomach viruses for each of my kids and the worst one for myself too, etc), and have been trying to figure out how to grow and deepen my faith from it. This post is just perfectly what I needed to read. I’m a lobster too :) Thank you.
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Nell April 29, 2014 at 9:47 am

Oh, Hallie! How very very true that we’re all lobsters at times. But I love that you give yourself fair credit that you felt infused with extra love and ability to give beyond yourself. That’s the essence of being a love vessel for God, right? Thanks for the inspiration!
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Tracy G in SLP April 29, 2014 at 10:18 am

Oh, Hallie, I needed this today. I, too, have been in the pot for quite some time. There was a glorious two-day reprieve at Easter, but then it’s right back in. Today is particularly tough, so your words are especially encouraging. Thank you for sharing what God is doing in your life. It’s a great reminder that all of this suffering is not for naught. God bless you and your family.

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Aileen April 29, 2014 at 2:14 pm

Thank you for this beautiful analogy, Hallie! I always need a reminder to stay in the pot. Typically, when I’m going through something, I thrash about until I’m near the end and then I think that I wasted some good sanctification moments. Or I might remember at the beginning but keep the thought at the back of my mind because I’m afraid to “let go and let God”, as the saying goes.

And ditto with the online communication. I’m not good at that at all. I try to be but I don’t want it to look like I’m trying too hard. So I step back. Too far back. I need to work on that.

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Maia April 29, 2014 at 3:16 pm

oh, Hallie…*sigh*…you say this so well…and inspire me so much…and have helped me IMMEASURABLY as a blogger and mom and person-who-has-to-get-dressed. Move over…I hope there is room in that lobster pot!
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Katherine April 29, 2014 at 4:43 pm

As a lobster currently in the pot, thank you. I often berate myself for not suffering better, the lamb who doesn’t open her mouth, who accepts all the crosses with patience and joy. I should be suffering better. It is a balm in the flames to think just being in them can be enough. Thank you.

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Carolyn @ Svellerella April 29, 2014 at 6:03 pm

Oh, Hallie I feel you! I always want to comment something meaningful and by the time I’ve thought of just the perfect thing, someone’s stuck a whole roll of toilet paper in the toilet. So I just hardly don’t! And YES to the lobster thing, we are currently going through illness bout number …3? I think? I’m so sorry for your loss, but glad you blogged this today. You show a much more faithful, charitable temperament than I by expressing yourself so sweetly.
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Jennifer @ Little Silly Goose April 29, 2014 at 9:14 pm

So so so glad you wrote this! I was just thinking today that I needed some of your wisdom, and then I saw this post. Thank you!
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chris May 5, 2014 at 10:16 am

Aw, what a lovely post, Hallie! How thoughtful…..even if all you write was your FF, I’d be happy clicking over to visit! I do enjoy anything you pen. I’m the same, in terms of commenting!! I hear ya.
I sub but today I’m visiting from the FB page of CWBN.:)

Have a lovely day!
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bobbi @ revolution of love May 5, 2014 at 12:10 pm

I love this. “Just stay in the pot.” That’s going to be my motto this week. Life reminds me a lot of labor. You go through incredibly tough moments when you think you can’t go any further but somehow, by the grace of God, you make it. When you see that beautiful new life in your arms, all the pain and suffering was worth it and you soak in the beauty of your new born and forget how much it hurt to get to this point. God always seems to know just when we can’t take it anymore and he gives us a bundle of grace and love and shows us the new life he has poured into our souls. We rest, until he has us do it again. :-)
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