It starts out as a simple wish...a need to fill the ticking clock of motherhood...the desire to hold a piece of you in your arms...a yearning to love something more than you have every loved anyone else!!! If you were like me, this simple wish QUICKLY progressed from a flutter in my heart to a positive on a pee stick...just six weeks after we tied the knot! It was all dreamy in my simple (19 year old) mind!!! It stays dreamy folks until about your third trimester when it hits you like a TON of bricks!! You are having a BABY....like another life form that is solely relying on you...that you are responsible for...to bathe and feed and raise into a decent member of society!! Then comes the whirlwind of infancy and all the sleepless nights that come with it. There are no real deep thoughts going on - let's be serious - there is too much sleep deprivation and poo to think much beyond getting through the day (and don't forget the endless NIGHTs). Well, if you were like me (I keep saying that but I'm pretty sure no one was as crazy as us - 3 kiddos by the time I was 24 - what were we thinking!!)...the sleep deprivation faded and the dream of another blissful baby takes over and before you know it you have gotten pregnant every other summer since being married and now have THREE beautiful spring blessings to be responsible for!!
I remember feeling overwhelmed at the responsibility of it all...the money....the clothes....the food....the diapers....the lack of sleep....the drool on my shoulder...a tantrum out in public....nap schedules....you mama's of littles know EXACTLY what I am talking about!
As I have watched my children (and family) grow over the last couple of years I am overwhelmed at how the responsibility of being Mom to these little blessings has shifted! I have been in awe of who my children are and who they are becoming. It has been so amazing to watch my kids grow into their own and get to know their hearts and desires. But to be honest - the responsibility that comes with raising older kids scares the daylights out of me! The worries that I had when my kids were little seems so carefree compared to the weight of raising young people....there is so much less control (I don't do well with giving up my control)!!! The responsibility has shifted from taking care of their every need....to guiding them to take care of themselves (when did this happen??)!!! It consists of watching your children walk through hard times and not being able to fix it...it consists of watching them interact in the world and hoping they will stay true to themselves....it consists of molding and guiding them to do what is right! At some point it dawns on you that beyond all else - your children are becoming young people who will get to choose for themselves - they get to choose their friends, their career, their spouse, their beliefs....your say in things dwindles and you pray with all of your heart they get it! You pray that they will get that we love them and want what's best for them....that they will get that GOD loves them and life is only life with HIM in it....you pray that they will love and respect others....you pray that you have shown them what it means to be a loving spouse and parent....you pray that they want to get it!
OKAY - some of you may think I'm getting ahead of myself (my kids aren't heading off to college anytime soon or anything)!! Watching my kids begin to take more responsibility of themselves....slowly beginning to give over the reigns....watching as they begin to make choices for themselves....it has been eye opening and terrifying! It has brought me to my knees more than once over the last few months! Pleading for the souls of my children - realizing that I no longer will have control (realizing that I never have)....fallen broken before my Father knowing that this is exactly how He feels with us! My heart hurts thinking about all that I want for my children - I cannot imagine what our Heavenly Father feels watching us live our lives on our standards, our agenda! I pray daily for my growing children - that I would be the Mom they need me to be. Knowing that this season of our lives is fleeting and will be gone before we know it - I pray daily that I will pour into my children...not just live life with them....but show them how to really live and WHO to really live for! I am a miserable failure on my own - that has been proven over and over again! I am reminded daily as I look into my children's eyes that I cannot do this on my own - I never was meant to. I am reminded that my children are TOO important to just wing it and hope for the best...I NEED my redeeming Savior to walk with me....to walk with them....to help me show them HIS love! We were never meant to carry the weight of responsibility on our own - it is with HIS grace that I give over my control and my worry and PRAY so very deeply that HE will watch over and keep my children! That HE will guide them and protect them...that HE will show them what it means to truly live!
We witness a miracle every time a child enters into life. But those who make their journey home across time and miles, growing within the hearts of those who wait to love them, are carried on the wings of destiny and placed among us by God's very own hands.
~ Kristi Larson ~
~ Kristi Larson ~
Not flesh of my flesh, Nor bone of my bone, But still miraculously my own. Never forget for a single minute, You didn't grow under my heart - but in it!
~ Fleur Conkling Heylinger ~