The day I found out I was pregnant with my firstborn, I cried. There is nothing like realizing you are completely responsible for another human being for the next 18 plus years to send one into an all out panic attack.
My crying was not because I didn’t want children, but because this was not the way I had carefully mapped out my future mothering days. My husband was going to Seminary full-time and working part-time, while I worked full-time to put food on the table and heat our 500 square foot home.
They say ignorance is bliss but let me tell you, I (thought I) knew exactly what I had gotten myself in to. My ice cream addiction and gas money for trips to the mall was funded by many (MANY) hours of babysitting. I knew exactly what lay ahead of me. Hence the crying.
Forget carefully selecting colors for the nursery and attending childbirth classes, my pregnancy was spent mapping out the nearest bathroom and locating emergency pull-offs on the interstate between my house and my place of employment. Because this little guy was already proclaiming who was boss and set my feet a training for a nine month vomiting marathon!!!
Before my son’s birth, I had visions of resting in my private hospital room while the wonderful, experienced nurses took care of my newborn. So you can see why I sported a look of utter confusion when they brought that little bassinet in to my room and then left!!!?
Hello? Now what??? I was only twelve hours into motherhood and already it was not going as planned.
Mothering these little people, with their own unique ideas about fashion and whether or not the chicken nugget is to soggy to eat, can drive a sane woman to the brink of insanity!!!!
Once you board this carnival ride, it doesn’t take long to realize parenting rarely works out the way we thought and it certainly doesn’t look like it does on facebook or pintrest.
Being a mom is hard work. It is constant, and it is messy. There are no pay raises and no vacations (unless you call a field trip to the Alligator Farm, where you and another mom schlep the class cooler around all day, a vacation).
But it is also a beautiful image of Jesus’ relationship with us.
How He parents us out of the deep reserve of love He has for each one of us.
How He sets limits in our life to protect us from what we don’t yet see.
How He gives us better gifts than we know to ask for.
How He engages us without the distraction of texts, phone calls, or facebook getting in the way.
Nothing about parenting is a surprise to Jesus.
He knew exactly what He was getting in to when He took our place on the cross.
He knew we would get distracted and forget to say thank you.
He knew we would look at that boundary he set before us, and blatantly look Him in the eye as we crossed it.
He knew how much we needed Him, before we ever acknowledged this need ourselves.
Let’s be intentional in looking for the beauty in the mess of this thing we call motherhood.
In the month of May, please join me as my new friend begins a series, The Messy and Majestic of Motherhood. Each Monday in May there will be a guest post (my post is set to run May 26th). Join in as we celebrate what it means to be a mother!!!
And watch for Jennifer’s e-book coming out in time for Mother’s Day!!!