As an African-American woman there is a perception that we can handle every and anything that is thrown at us and we can and do, however sometimes things get hard for us and we falter. Sisters we get up, take care of our families, work, worship and do everything except take care of ourselves. Why is it so difficult for us to put ourselves first?
The bible says, “Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord.” Psalms 27:14 Now if you’ve been to a black church you’ll always hear an older black woman say “Child I’m just waiting on glory.” I understand this saying so much more now as an adult. Sometimes you just get tired and nothing helps because your spirit is weary.
I understand what it means to wait on the Lord, although at times I feel like a break from a situation is sometimes what may be needed in the short-term. The physical body needs rest. Being a wife, mother, author and business owner can be taxing with the multitude of details that goes into any given day. I tell people all the time I manage four people’s schedules, Aiden, Miles, my husband Kevin and finally mine. A lot of times I will cancel something for myself because it doesn’t work with the family’s schedule and I know I shouldn’t, but sometimes it’s just that way.
Sometimes we have to suck it up and go with the flow. This is where things can go awry if you’ve been strong for too long. When do you let go? When do you break down? Is it when the tears flow? Or is it when you’re past the point of aggravation and you explode? I don’t know about you, but for me its happened after tears and the point of aggravation. I totally lost it over something so minor because I had been holding on too long to something. I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of the strong black woman stereotype. I want to be the woman who I’m supposed to be while being a helpmate to my husband, however sometimes old habits are hard to break. For as long as I can remember I’ve always been the one that people looked to for advice, now it’s just exhausting and unsustainable. I find myself pining for the opportunity to relinquish control to someone else and that’s when I remember to wait on the Lord.
Sometimes God tells us to stand still and I struggle with that. I don’t know how to be still. I know how to be busy. When you’ve been strong for too long you learn how to cope and keep yourself entertained, busy or actively engaged in something. My mind is always racing with thoughts and worries. I know that I’m supposed to trust God, however when you’ve been shown what you can handle its hard to sometimes step back and let go.
Being strong doesn’t mean that you can’t lean on someone, talk to a therapist, cry, scream, pray about it or whatever you do that helps you through. It just means that you may have to release or let go. When you’re strong you hold on and fight. I don’t want to anymore – I just want to breathe – have peace and feel calm. It’s okay to not be strong and let someone else take care of it. If you’re struggling try to take a step back, ask for help and accept it. You’ll thank yourself later.