Thursday, September 23, 2010


This post makes me a little nervous as I know how many Equippers peeps read this blog (!) Please remember when reading it that we cannot always watch every word that comes out of our mouths and I am not saying that we need to. Our views and opiniosn are shaped (partly) by our own experiences, and that's more than ok.

On Sunday someone asked me how I have been. "It's been full on" I replied. "Oh" they said and then in an encouraging tone said "You know that around church circles it's said that no-one has capacity like a Mum with young kids. And if you want to hand a full on ministry to someone you choose a Mum who has had young kids."

Everything in me wanted to hand Blossom to them to hold while I bashed their head in. NO, something in me yelled. I DISAGREE! I realised I was having an extreme reaction to an innocuous (and encouraging and complimentary) comment and so smiled and went off to chat to my wise Sounding-Board-in-Heaven during worship. I pray that this person didn't see anything inside me at that point (I don't think they did) as they are wonderful and kind and loving.

I needed to find out why I disagreed so vehemently. After a chat to my Loving Father I realised that I reacted as a recovering infertile to the view that you need to have had kids to be qualified. To have something that otherwise you couldn't. That if you don't have kids or haven't experienced multiple kids you cannot possible have developed a large capacity. That's wrong and I know that's not what this person meant. But it is a view that holds many holes. The person with the largest capacity I know (she's very very well known and loved at Equippers- a clue!) is still waiting for children. This girl and her hubbie have a capacity that has stunned and inspired Dida and I.

Once I calmed down and took a deep breath (as I knew this person was just making conversation.... and is kind and nice.) I found I still disagreed. Based on my experience of having small children and having been an infertile this is it:

Having small children builds physical capacity. You multi-task in ways you never comprehended before. I added working to the mix and so multi-tasking and list making have become a fine art. The last 4 months have been the most physically taxing of my life. I have been more tired than I can express. Sometimes I am so tired I can't get a straight word out. I ache.

Infertility treatment is also physically taxing but it's for a shorter time period. This period will last for years. I have bags and smudges under my eyes for the first time. And no matter how long I sleep in, I wake tired.

A trial like infertility or sickness builds emotional and mental capacity. Like nothing else. Needing God to help me breathe and eat and walk and function built an emotional & mental capacity into like nothing else. At the worst times I needed God to help me get out of bed in the morning. We would do life together one step at a time. This time is not doing that.

So the two are different. Different types of capacity at different times and stages of life. That makes sense to me. I do think that we can develop massive capacity regardless of our circumstances and what we go through. There is no one size fits all. And I think a barren woman could (and many do) have the capacity that a Mum does.

Anyway, this is a good post for me to crystalise my thinking. [It may have bored some of you to tears- hopefully you stopped reading a long time before this! ] My reaction was extreme and a gut reaction and I'm very glad I internalised it. And the conversation is untraceable so no-one knows who it was. Because the person is lovely and was only trying to have a chat...!



Gail said...

Babes, I agree with you.x

P.S. I know that being stretched increases capacity, but I also think passion and desire plays a part in it too. Being stretched + purpose and passion in that ministry = super capcity.

Amy said...

Hello Sweetie. I know the exact person you are talking about, because I have been told exactly the same thing :)

Good thoughts on that word capacity... its a funny one. Grace of God gives capacity too. I really liked how you broke apart the meaning of the word for yourself, to understand why the comment stung. I like the angle you took, layers of capacity, emotional and physical.

Like you, mothering has made me tired beyond being able to move. As they have gotten older, less headspace for me and more emotional stretching. Sometimes, when I consider doing extra things, I am probably the antithesis to the original comment...I run a mile! I know first hand how crazy my world is and I have the luxury sometimes of not having to add more responsibilities. My own capacity is exactly that. It is so individual isn't it?

Anyway - big hugs my friend. Love you - wish I was there to see those babies of yours growing SO fast!!! Can't believe how fast.

Big hugs, miss (REALLY MISS) our bloggy coffee and the ability to sit around a tiny, (safe) table and pour out our woes (and giggles).


Anonymous said...

Sammy thanks for sharing this
each of our experiences are so valid and so true to each of us...I think it is a reflection of God...we are always trying to box God in...and we do it with each experienced has shown me there is ALOT of grey in the world...and yet I was taught it was so Black and White
I am so glad you did not react to that person and was able to see their comment for what it is...sometimes people are just unaware...and for the record, I am with you on this!
love and light

Simoney said...

Hey Sammy... I think I am with Amy! I disagree with what that person said as well - but for different reasons!
I never thought of the infertility thing... I thought you were going to say, how darn busy it is as a mum and how anybody who would suggest giving a tired busy mother with small children MORE work is NUTS!
But isn't it funny (strange) how we are sensitive to the same comment but in different ways.
I would have reacted internally too - but not because I think only "mothers" have "capacity" but because the statement is just not true.
A busy mother (or any other kind of busy person) MAY be able to juggle many things but the cost is TOO HIGH. And that is what I would have reacted to! Funny huh??
Our sensitivty in different areas?

These Three Kings said...

James 1:1-4
Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. 4Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

Gods gives all of us "capacity" which I love to call grace. Here in the above verse the greek word for patience is-Hupomeno- hupo(under) meno (to remain,to abide)It denotes the ability to exhibit stedfastness and constancy in the face of the most formidable difficulty!

NOW, thats where the capcity of all things come from..the One who placed all circumstances in our lives.. kids or no kids, God is not partial in sanctification. Well said friend!

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