When I was growing up I had this image of what a mother should be and I was going to be that mom. When I got pregnant with my oldest daughter I changed a lot about my life at the time (I was a teen mom) and I was determined to be the mother I had always dreamed of.
I gave my daughter everything. Most of my days were spent dreaming about how I could give her more, and more. I wanted for her to have everything I didn’t have and more. My ideas of a mother were mostly on being able to give her material possessions, spending lots of time with her, and making sure the house was shiny and spotless.
I can’t even tell you how many hours I worried about her education when she was only 2 years old. Would I homeschool, send her to private school? I knew I did not want to send her to public school. I looked at every preschool there was, and I dreamed of a Montessori education for her but I was unable to afford the tuition.
When my Lil Man as born I was bound and determined to not make the same mistakes I had made with my oldest daughter. In my eyes it was my second chance to be that mother I had always dreamed of being. Now that I had my daughter and my son I just knew my days were going to be filled with baking cookies, doing homework, taking care of a sweet little baby, and soccer practices. In my eyes I had accomplished a lot, but everyday I was burdened with all the “mistakes” I had made. In other words I had yet to live up to my expectations of what a mother looked like.
Then I found out I was pregnant with my third. Life changed for me really fast. It was in that moment that everything I had dreamed about being a mother had died. Now my oldest would have to share a room with her new baby sister. My son was only 9 months old when I found out I was pregnant, I felt like I had let him down. My heart was a mess because I didn’t know how to fit this new life into the expectations I had placed on myself as a mother. How could I be the perfect mom? I was so afraid that I would fail, especially now that I was going to me a mom to three.
Over the years what a mother looks like has certainly changed, thanks to my relationship with God, and my youngest daughter, my miracle. I had to let go of a lot of my own selfish desires. It was even harder to let go of my expectations.
Motherhood looks differently for me now. My desires for my three beautiful children reflect my heart for them to grow up living out a life that reflects their heart for Jesus. I have to say that guiding them to that life is not easy.
The expectations I have of myself are different, and yet they seem to have a far bigger and eternal value, than all the latest Disney store gadgets I use to buy for my oldest daughter. It weighs heavily on my heart.
I need for the Lord to teach me how to be a mother, because in my heart being a good mother is based on my performance. Failure is always lurking around the corner, and God knows how much I hate failure, in fact I fear it.
I need for God to teach me how to be a gracious mother, not only to my children, but mostly to myself.
Motherhood now is less about controlling every outcome of their life in order to make sure they have a perfect life. Now it is more about being a forever LOVING presence in their life that is there for them when they face the trials that WILL come. But my heart always wants to go back to the controlling mother, I want to protect them, and I want to be their savior…but Jesus can only be their savior.
I can teach them about Jesus, and I can LIVE my life delighting in Him. Then all I can do is PRAY that one day they will also grow up loving Jesus and delighting in Him.
Free will is not an easy thing to grasp when you love someone as much as a mother loves her child. I LOVE them so much! But even in the midst of their choices, which aren’t always good because they came from my human, fleshly womb, I have hope.
I have hope because somehow in the midst of this world God found ME, and He now has my heart, and I know He can find their heart too.
I just pray for Jesus to teach me everyday how to be a mother to my three precious gifts…