The Cost of Service

 

Authenticity

This post was first published on October 20, 2012, on ConfessionsofaThinkaholic.

 

 

 

I haven’t written much on here in a little while. I did, however, write another post for Tiny Buddha and I will post that link as soon as it is up, probably in the next month or so. I’ve also been doing some work on my other blog, Our Eclectic Life.

Anyway, I’ve just been up to the same old stuff. Busy, as always, and trying to figure out how to manage it all and still make time for some peace in my life.

Things are so different in our lives now, every day is a big change. I don’t do all the same things that I used to do, time for myself has diminished greatly. It’s getting more difficult to keep that attitude I’ve had lately…”It’s better to live a life of servitude than to live selfishly for yourself alone.”

With so many tasks laid upon me so suddenly to care for and to manage, I feel, at times, that I’ve lost myself in the process of finding a way to care for everyone else. I do serve. I have a humble heart now. Something quite foreign to me from how I’ve been in the past. But sometimes I wonder, at what cost?

My husband is starting to voice his concerns more now about the direction our lives are going and what our future is starting to look like. He’s worried that a life of servitude is all we are headed for.

He’s not a selfish man, but I do think he’s yearning for a bit of our “old” life back. I tell him, “things have changed.” He asks me, “are they ever going to go back to the way they were?”

The truth is, I don’t know. Just when I think I’ve got another task completed (in helping to prepare my father for life without my mom, for instance), and I think I’ve made great headway and I’m one step closer to getting it all done, another task arises. He feels it’s one thing after another, with everything, our own business included.

It’s hard to explain without boring you with all of the details. We’re just busy all of the time, every day, with multiple things needing our attention.

We are like everyone else out there, we get overwhelmed, too. But I maintain my philosophy about servitude. You see, I still feel that, even if I am exhausted at the end of the day, even if I got nothing done for myself, let alone anything pleasurable or relaxing, I have still accomplished greatness and I can feel peace for what I’ve done because I have served another.

But if it’s like that every day, and I’m exhausted every day, and I have nothing left for myself every day, how do I get past any feelings of resentment?

A few years ago, I would have been filled with resentment. I still feel the curve of resentment’s fingers wrapping around my heart even now, sometimes. In the past, I would feel ashamed or fearful of those feelings. Now I recognize them, allow them, acknowledge them, and let them go. I forgive myself for feeling fearful, not necessarily for the resentment itself. I know that I am human, and I will feel human emotions.

So, how do I get past it even after forgiving myself for them; to feel okay with the way life is right now?

I guess I just remember that there are things that need doing; things that must be done. That I have to take care of myself and decide which things can be said ‘no’ to. That this is not a selfish act. I need to organize my time, make time for my family and myself, as well. This may seem like a further burden, now having to worry about hurting feelings and saying ‘no’, managing time more wisely, discussing these things with everyone. But, in the long run, getting these ‘ground-rules’ set will save a lot of hurt feelings and confusion.

So, isn’t this just one more task? Yep. And probably not the final one. But it seems to be a step closer. What I tell Noah is, that, even though he feels we’re always “one step closer, two steps back”, we’re still a step closer. Life has changed. I don’t think it will ever go back to the way it was. How can it? Now, the task is managing well with what we have. Everything that one ‘deals’ with in life is a lesson. And in lessons there are blessings. Whether you see them at first, or not.

You can look at tough times in your life one of two ways. With resentment and anger, or with gratitude and grace. It really is all in your perspective. You have all the power, because you control your reaction, though you may not control the situation. If you constantly have a “woe-is-me” attitude about your life, you will always have that life. If you choose to look for and find, any possible lesson and blessing in your situation, whatever it may be, and learn from it and then be thankful for it, you will be living from your Highest Self, and you will always have THAT life.

And you know what? That’s worth living a life of servitude, to me.

Author’s noteEven though it’s been almost 4 years since I first wrote this post, and things have gotten much better–I say “no” a lot more, now, I still feel the same way about servitude. It is a balance that I have acquired, but not yet mastered. I am okay with that…anything worth having takes work…even if it is a lifelong investment.

 

Wishing you all the wonderfulness you deserve,

 

Nanette

 

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