Monday, 18 April 2016

Eyes and Hands That Help

Today on Mombies Unite, Charity is here with a reminder that in this big world of distraction and technology, sometimes we need to check back in and be cognizant of the people right in front of us. She's talking about the bystander effect she experienced personally and encouraging us to be eyes and hands that help wherever we are.

Meet Charity. She a child of God, wife and mom to six incredible children, (the youngest of whom is being extremely stubborn and taking his or her time cozied up in her belly right now). Her talents range from photography to homeschooling to coffee making and wine choosing and this vibrant and vivacious mama has a knack for re-purposing antiques in her gorgeous North Dakota home. Charity and my husband are cousins and I am pretty fortunate to have married into two incredible extended families on both Nathan's sides. Charity is an incredible example to me of real and passionate womenhood and motherhood in Christ and I am so excited that she took the time to recount her experience here on Grumbling Grace. Her story touched me and I know you will relate to it too. 


One day this past fall I took my 5 children to a tiny town in North Dakota. My eldest daughters were signed up for a homeschool pottery class that morning. The leader of our group had arranged for the moms to gather for some shopping at the local antique shop and coffee during class time. Sounds fun, right? 

We arrived and I got my girls settled into their class. I was eager to check out the shop even though I had the other three in tow. I  was sure I'd be able to manage. Right. 

We walked into the front door and the room was lined with shelves and shelves and shelves of glassware. The old, breakable,expensive kind. I quickly grabbed hands with my littles and we left the premises and decided to head to the coffee shop for a breve and some hot chocolate. I was pretty sure I'd be able to manage this one, especially since I only had three children with me. 

I needed coffee. We got settled into the coffee shop that was now filled with other moms, some I knew, some I didn't. I ordered each child a hot chocolate and a cookie. I took out some toy cars and let my one-year-old play with them on the floor. He roamed a little but I kept an eye on him as I sipped my breve.  I began to relax and thought to myself, "This may not have been such a bad idea after all." 

The three and five year old began to squabble over the last few bites of cookie. They were going at it pretty good when I heard a table crash behind me followed by a loud cry. It was my one-year-old. He had tipped the table over on himself and it had him pinned to the floor.  The room went silent and I felt all eyes on me. I grabbed the table off my baby and quickly picked him up. He was crying and had a big lump on his forehead but he was alright. 

NOT. A. SINGLE. PERSON. ROSE. TO. HELP. ME.  I quickly gathered up my family and left with my head down, tears stinging my eyes. 

As I drove home I thought this over. 

Why did this event in the coffee shop bother me so much? Was I just embarrassed? Was my pride smashed because I couldn't handle"only three" after all?  

No, it was more than that. It was that not a single other person in that room got up to assist me in any way. No, I shouldn't expect it but in those moments of chaos I was made to feel very, very alone. 

Now, I'm not telling this story to evoke pity. What I do want you to see is what I learned that day. 

I need to have eyes and hands that help. It's as simple as that.  Being a mom is hard enough without being made to feel as if we walk alone. It is so much more enjoyable and doable when you have some support around you, encouraging you onward.

So the next time you see a mom in distress, don't just stand there staring and being thankful it isn't you. Open the door for her, put her cart away, tell her she's doing a good job with those little ones.  

Encourage her. It will go a long way. 

Loved Charity's words? Can you relate
Show this mombie some love in the comments and give her words a share!
 Also, send some prayers and encouragement for this incredible mama and her sixth baby, hopefully deciding to vacate the womb and join the party any day now!

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