It’s morning. Again. The girls have been fed and the dog has been walked. Now little polka dot pajama legs are swinging happily as they watch the PBS kids app ( and it’s not even raining!) so that I can drink my now-lukewarm cup of coffee and write this for you all. There was a time when my life was my own…. exciting, unpredictable, and, well….a lot less structured than it is at present.
My old self would have balked at routine and scorned my nine o’clock bedtime. The thought of happiness lying within the folds of a slow and steady race marked by meals, bath time and dog walks never occurred to me. And don’t get me wrong…there are moments…dark moments, really…when weariness and the old voices pester me into feelings of inadequacy and discontentment. They sound something like: “All that education and this is what your doing now?” Sometimes the darkness is slightly less articulate in it’s badgering and a general feeling of “going in circles” invades me and threatens to dispel the sweet aroma of household peace.
One such incident occurred several weeks ago as I lay on my bed, exhausted from a full day of being a mommy. Tears slid down, soaking my best pillowcase….I did not have the umph to wipe them away. I was under emotional assault. The internal word-weapons reminded me that I had “accomplished nothing” that day, that I was not a step closer to my “goals” and ( of course) that I was spending my life going in circles.
What happened next was divine intervention and has empowered me to defend myself against accusations of “circling”. I Googled “circle architecture”. I KNOW. So weird. Sitting there with my face soaked, scrolling through a list of articles for which I had no context…I found it. It was a picture of a “circle hill”.
According to the article, ancient Hebrew people built hills with walkways that circled around at an ever-so-slight elevation, allowing people to travel in ease to a great height. The mental-pummel I was experiencing stopped immediately. You see, my girls and I had taken the hill on that very day. We had gone in circles, upward, both literally and figuratively. One of our very favorite places is McGovern Centennial Gardens and, at it’s center…you guessed it…the circle hill. Just that afternoon I had watched little legs joyfully skip around that circle and exclaim with pure toddler joy as they “suddenly” reached the top. Yes, we had gone in circles that day. Yes, we go in circles most days…but we are circling upward. The circles soften the incline and, one day, we will reach the top and exclaim with joy as we see just how far we have come.
Andrea Peters has a MSED in Education. She has enjoyed teaching in family services, life skill training, and the college classroom. Currently, she is "circling", enjoying the unforced rhythms of God's grace.