I had almost forgotten how much I love babies.
For many years I followed what I considered to be tenants of good living. I tried my best. I went over and above. I took the admonition, “it’s better to give than to receive,” to heart. And this was all well and good until I could no longer muster the energy to keep up. The resulting stress and fatigue led to resentment. Because I was so uncomfortable setting boundaries for my time, I burned out on jobs, volunteer work, and people, leaving a trail of wounded feelings and abandoned pursuits in my wake.
I taught preschoolers on Sunday mornings in our community church for 10 years, and by the end I hated it. Not the children, but the never-ending work that I felt I just had to do. For years after, I hesitated to interact with children for fear that once again my helping nature would take over and I’d end up agreeing to more caretaking. I couldn’t look at babies without feeling like a failure – giving up something, or in this case some little ones, I loved because I couldn’t find a balance.
I owe a huge debt of gratitude to sweet little Ginger Estelle for reminding me that I can share my heart without giving all of myself away.