I cannot speak for everyone out there, but I am fairly confident that most of us wear more than one proverbial hat. My hat collection includes: wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend, caregiver, technician, business owner, power lifter, tutor, and Army veteran. There are other hats I have held over the years as well. Some of them I have put down and others I have replaced. If you have not caught on yet, these hats are a metaphor for the different monikers I have according to education, relationships, and interests.
There are a few reasons I do not wear more than one hat at a time. The first reason is that it has never been stylish to wear more than one hat at a time. If I try to wear two hats or more, one inevitably falls off of my head. The second reason I do not wear more than one hat at a time is that I eventually forget that I have more than one hat on my head. The last reason I do not wear more than one hat at a time is because even when I have an outfit that matches all the hats I want to wear at once; I still have to choose a favorite if I do not want to look foolish.
The two hats I have to think about the most when choosing are the caregiver and wife hat. At one point in my life, I only had one hat for both, and boy did that hat get heavy in a hurry. My head hurt, my heart hurt, and I was stressed out all the time. Over a long period of time, I realized that I needed to have two hats for the purposes of being a caregiver and a spouse. My caregiver hat is simple, clean, and versatile. It is a large hat that is able to balance a lot of adornment. My spouse hat is vivid, alluring and mysterious. It is much smaller and invites intimacy. The details can only be seen up close. Each time I wear this hat; there is a new detail that presents itself. My caregiver hat makes me feel matronly and my spouse hat makes me feel loved. One can see that only using one hat for both caregiver and spouse can lead to problems.
How do I know which hat to wear? Like most people in this world each person is given a set of unique talents and abilities. There are people in this world that always look perfectly put together and accessorized. Then there are others that wear sweatpants with high heels. I do not pretend to know what is fashionable these days, so I stick with the classics. My choice of hat is not much different for me. I tend to choose what is practical and logical. Sometimes I choose the wrong hat and I am the sweatpants and heels girl. Most of the time I am the girl that is able to accessorize well.
The ability to choose the right hat, depending on the outfit took years of refining. I had to be open to criticism. I had to be open to communication and I had to be willing to admit when I was wrong. Finally, I retrieved enough data to be able to discern each time I needed to change. When I learned what looked best I was able to change at a moment’s notice.
In Exodus Chapter 16, Moses tells of the provision of manna to the Israelites. God gave them specific instructions to collect only what they needed for the day. The exception to this instruction was to collect two days worth of manna on the sixth day because none would be provided on the Sabbath. Those that tried to keep what they had collected from the day before woke to rotten and bug-infested food. God wanted his people to follow instructions and stay focused on provision for one day at a time. In His wisdom, he even provided instruction that allowed for a day of rest. The lesson here is to focus your efforts. If you try to take on too many things at once (wear too many hats at once); it is likely to become waste or rot.