Today I offer a guest post submitted by Louella Martin about her struggle adjusting to motherhood. She would like to hear not only from other moms who are in her stage, but also from those who are through it and who can teach us younger ladies how to do this well.
“We’re lying there nose to nose, blue eyes matching blue, deep staring into deep. Slowly I watch as her little eyes flicker, then close. Chest rising slowly, she’s breathing rhythmically and off to sleep. I catch her pacifier holder, fingering the beads which spell out her name. Soraya Willow
Three years, two girls into this journey and I still don’t know what I’m doing. I still don’t have words to the emotions and I don’t always know if I like it. It is for this, shame threatens to engulf me and I get up off the bed, leaving my sleeping daughter, before I suffocate.
Thirty minutes later she’s awake again. I squash the sigh I feel and smile into her wide eyes instead.
I’m in the middle of playing a game with this loud rambunctious family of mine and I don’t want to stop. Not ten years ago I was one of them and now? Now I’m lucky to get bathroom breaks to myself. And the thought wriggles its way into my head – If I knew then what I know now…
I can’t finish the thought, can’t allow my mind to dwell on that but Jesus what do I do? How can I get beyond this?
My second daughter was born in the car, a week late, and I feel like it epitomizes me and her ever since then. She’s the wind and clouds and sea waves, always moving, reaching, restless. I am the sea turtle, flipped on my back, legs flailing, arms reaching, never enough. I clean up one mess and two more happen while I’m bent over. It’s two steps forward, three back every single day and how many times must I go to bed with the floor littered, counter buried in dishes and the next morning no one but me gets to deal with it all again.
If I knew then what I know now… tears prickle my eyes because I don’t want to think this way and I do anyway.
I envy my engaged sister and newly married friends and married-but-no-children sister-in-law. My cynicism wants to hold all the red flags in front of anyone debating having children. I text congratulations to friends having babies and feel my glaring hypocrisy. Shame descends again.
In these moments it does not help to know that children are of the Lord and precious gifts. My precious demanding infuriating children.
I love them with my whole heart and sometimes my heart is so tiny there is room just for me.
And yet… and yet, let it be said, that even though I am finding this season hard, even though I do not enjoy newborn babies, even though I do not feel like I am ever enough, let it be said, I did this as well as I could.
If I knew then what I know now… and I give this over to Jesus.
I give it all over to Jesus – the shame, the weariness, the anger and selfishness and bitterness, the jealousy and envy.
I give it all to Him and through my faltering efforts, I pray he will shine through me. Let it be said I did it as well as I could and learned to wring joy out of every day in the midst of the glaring ordinary.
If I knew then what I know now and I will rest and live and work and leave it all to Jesus.”
From Louella Martin.
What do you connect with?
How did young motherhood surprise, challenge, or delight you?
What have you learned along the way?