There is a season in life to say "no". When you are in the thick of motherhood with little ones who need your full time and attention, and a house and a husband, and quite possibly a job on top of it all, dear good grief you do not have to go to your second cousin’s gender reveal party. Or your Uncle’s surprise 70th, or your in-law’s barbecue to meet their college roommates. Nothing if you don’t want to. I give you full permission, sweet lady.
A few months back when I was looking up ways to politely decline invitations to things without lying, I came across some helpful hints. But mostly I already knew. I just had to be brave enough to tell the truth. Lately I have sent a lot of texts and made a lot of phone-calls that go something like this:
“I’m so sorry, that sounds wonderful and we would love to be there, but we are stretched thin right now and need to stick to our schedule…”
Sometimes I even just say: “I’m sorry we’re not going to make it to that.”
No need to over-explain, no need to lie. Don’t lie. It never feels right, because it's not right.
You are a mother, darn it. The queen of your own castle. You have little people who are relying on you to be good, and well, and not overly-stressed, and in tune with THEIR needs- not everyone else's. If that is not more important than another gathering, I don’t know what is.
Yes, we love these people. Yes, their intentions are great and they want our company, but at the end of the day I am always happier that I have done something more laid back, more stress-free, and more in line with my own family’s needs. Life will go on and move forward, and in a less busy season of life, we will not be stretched so thin.
BUT, let this season teach you to stick with what is important and only that. My husband often reminds me of the story of Nehemiah rebuilding the wall around Jerusalem. Many neighboring leaders were plotting against him and kept sending messengers to distract him from his work. His reply was this:
“I am in the middle of a great work, and I can’t come down...”
So are you, Mama!