“WHO SHOULD SUFFER BUT MYSELF? IT HAS BEEN MY OWN DOING, AND I OUGHT TO FEEL IT.” –– Mr. Bennet
So two things happened today that made me think about enduring. The first was that my daughter was tearful about a post I made on Facebook that I tagged her in. The post was intended to ask other mothers what they would do in the situation. I unknowingly hurt her feelings. My intentions were good, but the repercussions of my action hurt my daughter. I apologized immediately but am left with a tenderhearted girl who walked to school with her head bowed and my heart ached. Carrying the title, “Mom” should also have a crown that says, “I’m not perfect, I will make mistakes.” Or a ribbon banner across my chest that says, “When my child hurts, I hurt.” I thought of this as I watched her walk to school. I also thought of what Mr. Bennet said above when he came back from London after searching for Lydia. “Who should suffer but myself? It has been my own doing, and I ought to feel it.”
The other thing that made me think of endurance is that I ran for the first time in a month, and probably only the 5th time all summer. I luckily have maintained my weight however it was painfully, breathlessly, burning-in-the-legs, obvious that I had not maintained my healthy muscle tone and fitness. I basically took the entire summer off from exercising. As I ran my typical 2 miles, I wanted to stop and walk at the very beginning as my lungs gasped for air. But I didn’t. I wanted to stop in the middle when the gentle hill started. But I didn’t. I wanted to stop when I rounded the last bend and could see my home and yet–– my two miles were not up. I wanted so bad to give into the desire to stop. I wanted to quit. But what kept me going was thinking about Mr. Bennet’s words. “Who should suffer but myself? It has been my own doing, and I ought to feel it.” I had made other priorities over the summer, which included publishing my book, gardening, working extra shifts, and vacations, but I neglected myself. I wonder why I continually am relearning the lesson that one must do the little things for yourself in order to give to those around you. An emotional well that has not been maintained cannot quench the thirst of those you serve.
So with a heartfelt and honest apology to my daughter, (of which I hope she forgives me quickly), and a recommitment to exercise, eat right, and pray and read my scriptures and go to the temple, I hope to have the emotional endurance to fill my daughters’, friend’s, and family’s emotional bucket. For it is much easier to endure when you have maintained yourself. And for all you mothers out there who have felt that need to gasp for air; take a deep breath and know that your kids will follow your example. So hold your head high and press on. Endure to the very end. It will not be easy, but it will be worth it.
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