A wounded look later and you realize that you have just stung someone. And it hurts you as much as it does them. So in the midst of the chaos and confusion, there is now something much more worthy of attention.
I know that this build up doesn't just happen to women. But we are the Queen Bee in many respects. The chaos and confusion of multiple demands can bring us to the point of biting off someone's head, when they are guilty of nothing more than adding a sweet little "Honey?" to our already piled high plate.
I wish that I had not ever been guilty of taking out my frustration on the wrong person but I have. My own responses have caused me so much more grief than the mud, missed phone calls or burnt bacon at breakfast.
In talking about this with a few of my ministry friends, a personal mother-daugther story was relayed to me. This Pastor's wife was rushing between meetings, carpool and evening church service and decided to quickly run through a drive through for dinner with her daughter. As they approached the line to order, she rolled down her window and began to yell the specific details. Not open to interruption, she ignored her daughter gently saying, "Mom, mom, mom, mom..."
After finishing her order and realizing her pointer finger in the air was not enough to stop her daughter, she finally, said, "WHAT?"
To this her daughter sheepishly replied, "Mom, you are talking to the trash can. The speaker is up there."
As we laughed about the role of women, Queen Bee's, keeping our lives a buzz, I began to contemplate my personal responsibility of producing a sweet response to the "Honey?s'" in the days to come. Not all situations are funny. Sometimes the Queen Bee can cause an unrest that creates a domino effect throughout her family. When I know that I am anointed to bring peace and direction to my household and yet have been guilty of contributing to the chaos, I want to figure out why so that I can eliminate it from happening again.
When I contemplate the source of sour responses, I am left with one single common thread. Each of the situations I have mentioned and the ones I only think of now, have all escalated based upon one thing "too many." When we are overwhelmed, our sense of intrusion becomes very high, thus making us defensive to anything incoming (even when it's help). Most of the time these imbalances come on quickly and pass without too much trouble. But what about when we live in a state of pressure due to overwhelming circumstances? One major emotional burden can take all we have and at times even the simplest act of kindness can be difficult to muster.
Men are much better than women at keeping things separate. When women are upset about one thing, everything else is hard to appreciate. Knowing this about myself, as a woman, makes it important for me to intentionally set boundaries for myself. In the case of weighing my response to overload, the boundary I need is really more like a buffer zone. This must be self-required and self-maintained. The buffer would simply be the requirement to pause, breathe and think, before I reply. It sounds so simple. But when it might mean losing a well thought-out sentence forming in my head, (as I write my blog), so that I can pause, breathe and answer my daughter's question about what color shoes she should wear....??? I am simply reestablishing my priorities. Yes, I am frequently overwhelmed. But I cannot let the demands of the moment dictate the direction I choose to take or the response I chose to make.
I've got to go...have a few busy bees to see about!