Ever since I was a little girl, I dreamed of one day being a mom. I had no idea what that actually meant as a child, but I knew that I had it in me. And I didn’t just play with my baby dolls… I loved them and took care of them. It wasn’t until I officially entered motherhood that I realized the gravity of taking care of another human being. It’s a lot of work!
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With Mother’s Day quickly approaching, I’ve been giving a lot of thought to my journey as a mother….
Stress – Motherhood brings with it a great amount of stress. Before my first daughter was even born, I stressed about the pregnancy and labor. Then I stressed about feeding and whether or not she was developing properly. “Is this normal?” “What if I’m doing this wrong?” “Am I going to make a decision that will affect her for the rest of her life?” I know I’m not the only one who thinks this way… especially with their first child. Stress just comes with the territory.
Insecurity – I never realized how insecure I was until my daughters were born. I’m naturally a planner. I don’t make any major decisions without first doing the research to back up my choice. The problem with researching topics on parenting, however, is that everyone has their own thoughts and opinions… and they more often than not completely contradict one another! How do I know I’m making the right choices for my kids? I don’t. I simply have to trust my parenting choices to God.
Frustration – “Oh to relive the days of sleepless nights and non-stop crying!” (said no mom EVER!) Seriously though, I thought those days would never end. Don’t get me wrong, I do have many fond memories of my girls as newborns. They were so small, and they loved it when I held them! (I miss the days when they would let me rock them to sleep…) But I also remember a great deal of frustration when I couldn’t figure out why they were crying or why they wouldn’t let me sleep! And now that they are toddlers, the frustration certainly hasn’t gone away. It’s changed
Don’t get me wrong. I LOVE being a mom. I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. But it’s hard sometimes. I’ve experienced more stress and frustration in the past five years of my life than in all the previous years combined. But on the other hand, it’s also been the most joyous and amazing five years.
Motherhood may have made me little crazy, but I’ve also experienced more joy than I ever thought possible.
Throughout my journey as a mother, God has shown me how to transform my thinking…
Exchange Stress for Surrender – Throughout the past five years, I’ve had to learn what true surrender is all about. The stress was too much for me to handle on my own, and in all honesty, I see that as a good thing. I had to surrender my stress to God. I had to let Him lead me and guide me. And I had to rely on His peace to get me through.
Exchange Insecurity for Reliance – In all of my insecurity as a mother, I only had one place to turn to for strength – God. All my worrying about my girls amounted to nothing. I needed to give Him my worries and allow my heavenly Father to teach me what it means to be a good parent. (I’m definitely still working on this one.)
Exchange Frustration for Joy – For every frustrating and terrifying moment I have with my toddlers, I have an abundance of exciting and fun memories that bring me great joy. Who knew that two little girls could light up my life the way they do! Their cuddles, snuggles, and the way they say “I love you, mommy” – these things and more make it all worthwhile.
So has motherhood made me crazy? Why yes, it has. But I’m okay with that.
I may be a hot mess sometimes, but I’m crazy about my girls. And I am so thankful and blessed to be their mommy. Through it all, God has shown me that some of the most rewarding aspects of life require hard work, dedication, and complete reliance on Him.
*Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations taken from the NASB.