Teach me your ways, OH LORD, and I will walk in your truth; give me an undivided heart, that I will fear your name.

Psalm 86:11

I will be your God throughout your lifetime until your hair is white in age. I made you, and I will care for you. I willI will be your God throughout your lifetime until your hair carry you along and save you.

Isaiah 46:4

Blessed is the man whose quiver is full.... Psalm 127:5

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct thy paths.

Proverbs 3:5-6

Friday, December 11, 2015

Instructions not included

What seems like lifetimes ago my job as a mom was to change diapers, maintain feeding schedules, pump my life away, and kiss boo boos. I wasn't na├»ve enough to believe that the craziness I lived wouldn't change. Telling you I knew this was coming? Nope.

It was my job then to teach them to love Jesus, help their precious minds to dream and protect them with every instinct I had. That is still true. There are nights I lay night to Lex and we talk until we laugh, and then we cry. My Lexi girl is smart. She gets a lot more than I think she does. Our kids don't like secrets; they like to feel confident and know what is coming next. Lolly needs structure: we get up at the same time, you have 5 minutes to put your shoes on or there are consequences, next pack your lunch... etc. Luke cries about everything. His heart is tender, so so tender. Bro? He is our comic relief! After worrying so long about what came next, sometimes his genuine belly laughter reminds me that things are ok. Caleb, is an adventure every day. Learning each other, learning his heart and trying to learn his ever growing mind. Haley is missed. WE write her letters and talk often on the phone.

I am not sure what you gathered but it is still my job to protect them with every instinct I have. Changing diapers passed with time but now making sure they have clothes and food rests here. Things I thought would be stable and reliable quickly changed. Say what you want, make your judgements but I ask you this... is my job not the same?

There are days I hit my bed and crash hard, because I worked all night or because I worked two jobs and can barely keep my eyes open. Babies that signed that they needed things got me amazing mom comments, but some how when you raise your kids differently from others you don't get Christmas cards any more. People don't know how to deal with the brokenness.

I am happily married and have laughed more in the last year than I can remember. My dad commented over thanksgiving that he has never seen me so happy and healthy. On a daily basis I cry out to God and ask him why I am so happy when I see the brokenness in my kids hearts. I beg him to heal them like I know only he can. Chris is amazing and one day my kids will get that it is the roll being filled not the one filling it. But why is it like that? What is there absenteeism? Why do I still struggle to protect their hearts?

This is what I have learned. I cant do any of it. Just like I can give my life to Christ and still be subject to satan's tempting, no matter how many walls I build my kids heart can still be broken. It is part of growing for both of us. Reminds me to rely on God to help their precious minds dream and to remember that there are boo boos I cant kiss. Keeps me mindful that sometimes, I am salt in that wound.

Emotions are hard for me. I don't talk well. Ironically however when I sit here at the keyboard things pour out. Maybe that why it has been over a year since I was here. Avoiding things makes them seem less real. About the time things regulate and we seem to figure things out my kids ride some unorthodox roller coaster and come home a mess. I work a lot. I am not going to tell you I am super available. I kiss them goodnight, I provide health Insurance, a steady pay check and every morning I am the first and last face they see before school.

As these kids redefine what "mom" means each day, I wonder how many of you are living this journey? How many of you feel like although things look differently than you imagined feel like it is a mountain you cant climb? I have an amazing climbing partner, yet understanding the emotional turmoil in my head is no easy feat.  Praying and venting are a regular part of my day. Sometimes I call my dad and say I just need to talk. When I am done he says are you finished? That was a mess? It doesn't have to make sense, there doesn't have to be contextual value.... I just need it out.

I ask you now to consider the person you might have passed today with a screaming child in Walmart, or maybe the person that pushed a shopping cart into a store in the mall where it didn't belong, or the five year old that was being carried because he cant handle a large crowd. Did you know their story? Could you have carried the five year old and everything those emotion issues entailed? Begging you now to listen before you speak and hear what is being said. Being a mom looks different on all of us and quite frankly feels different for all of us. This whole mom thing is hard.

Have a baby they said. Its beautiful they said.

The emotions you feel the first time you hold that precious child in your arms, are nothing compared to when its heart gets broken the first time.  Be patient as we navigate this together.

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