Monday, March 21, 2011

What I am Worth

There have been many occasions over the past 3 years in which I let people's words get under my skin. I have been spending a significant amount of time working on this because I have to realize that they don't even know how hurtful their words are.
However, more than just words I am hoping to help people realize there needs to be a bigger change than just words, but also a change in their perception. One of the most hurtful things I have experienced is at parties or other large gatherings. The first thing people say to one another is the oh so common, "So what do you do for a living?" When I respond politely with, "I don't have a job, I stay at home." Their next question is, "So how many children do you have?" Then in my most patient voice, I respond with, "I don't have children." (This response angers me anyways, because what I really want to tell them is about my 5 beautiful children in heaven; but I am afraid of their reaction) Then they respond with a blank stare, they don't know what to say, so they say, "Well what do you do all day?" Now, I realize they are not trying to hurt my feelings, but man oh man they do! It took a while for me to realize this was going to be everyone's response, so I began to use humor. When people would ask those basic questions I began responding with, "Well, I don't have children or a job, so I basically shop and sit around and watch t.v." Then they would stare and wait to see if I was serious, then I would laugh and they would laugh with me and it didn't hurt so bad that way.
I feel like me being me, taking care of my husband and my dog, cleaning the house and cooking is not enough. It doesn't measure up to the world's standards of having enough purpose. I have struggled with this issue for the past 3 years, and I think it is so wrong! Why do we have to be measured by our job or how many children we have raised? Society makes us believe that if we don't have either, than we aren't worth much.
I was reminded yesterday at church about how much we are worth! We are worth so much more than what we do or what we have. An occupation or being a mom doesn't define who we are. God made us each in His image, exactly the way He wanted to make us. We are all different with various spiritual gifts. As Christians, we are called to so much more. We are called to love unconditionally, give to those who need, care for those who are hurting, and give compassion when it is due.
I have never felt as fulfilled as I do today. I concentrate on helping other women who struggle with infertility and walk along side moms who lose their babies. I love to dream about the future, and what I can do to help. This is a different me, a changed me. I used to only dream about being a mom. I thought having children was the only thing that would make me feel complete and fulfilled. Don't get me wrong, I still have a huge burning desire to be a mom! It just isn't the only thing that drives me every day. I don't wake up fixated on getting to that point in my life. I have realized if I live that way, life will pass me by. I now appreciate Ferrari so much more, I appreciate the time we have just the two of us. I know one day, it won't just be the two of us and that will be amazing! I know I am worth so much more and so are you! Don't let other's thoughts or perceptions about you get under your skin. I guarantee they don't know how much they are hurting you, because they don't walk in your shoes. Instead, focus on who you are and where your are in life; because God has you here in this place for a reason, so relish in His glorious and perfect plan!

Our Church's prayer for the week:
God, allow me to see others the way you see them.
God, allow me to see myself the way you see me.


  1. One of the best responses to probing questions is one I read in Dear Abby. A lady asked how to respond to questions that were too personal in nature and Abby said to say, "If you will forgive me for not answering, I will forgive you for asking."
    Hurtful questions are never OK. People really don't have the right to know ALL the details of our lives and you are NOT obligated to answer them.

  2. Shayla, loving your blog and reading about your "adventures". You ARE worth much (as are we all) and I love seeing what the Lord is doing in and through you! What a priviledge! 2Cor 1:4- you are living this out!! Laura

  3. This was a great post!! And the Lord is working on me with this issue in another season of life. I don't work outside my home, my children are raised and gone, and my husband is not yet retired. Probably for a good 10 years yet....and people are STILL asking me what in the world do you DO all day?? (asked me this even when I had 4 children (after they were all in school), a BIG house, and non ending church committments, haha. I find it humerous anymore, haha...I smile and say, "The Lord has blessed me and put me in the position where I don't have to work. Sooo, I simply "enjoy" my life. I never have a problem filling my days. NEVER" I think for me I have been struggling as my own worst enemy recently as I feel like I should be doing more sometimes. Quilting, sewing, more women's groups, projects, SOMETHING...but my bad arthritis keeps me pretty limited. I do keep busy don't get me wrong just doing what HAS to be done, but I have learned to be content not doing much. Does this make sense? Sounds to me like the Lord has put you in a position where you are free to minister for Him to people who need it despertely. Doesn't get much better than this in my opinion. Have a good day! Debbie

  4. I could not of said it better myself!! I love you! Mom

  5. I honestly think you should tell people you have 5 children in heaven and then see what they say:) But you know me lol your way is probably better...

  6. This is like reading something from my own mind, Shay. Like many other areas where I feel so similar to you, this jobless/childless/society looking down on/blank stare inducing situation is all too familiar. What do I do all day: Take care of my hubby, my home, family, friends. Reading, studying, researching. Spending time with God. This is of far greater value than more money, prestige, or a job.